trail through forested area

Understanding and Comparing Different Public Land Use Values

In line with the increasing recognition of trails locally and internationally, agencies including the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife (Parks and Wildlife) and some local governments propose to build more trails. Often these trails will pass through land not exclusively managed by that agency, with other agencies and non-government groups often having an interest in how the land is used. Careful consideration is, therefore, needed where proposed trails intersect with differing land uses, management jurisdictions or land use management priorities.

The rationale for this project was based on an identified need to better facilitate trail planning and decision-making processes, especially where conflict arises between multiple land uses in the establishment of formal recreation trails in WA.

The outcome of the project was the report Application of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) for Recreational Trails Decision Making in Western Australia which provided a preliminary guide for the ‘when’ and ‘how’ to apply the methodology in the trails planning process. That outline is being presented at the 2017 Trails Industry Forum and is scheduled to be ground-tested with local government by mid-2017.

Principal Areas of Enquiry:

Management and Technology
Urban and Regional Planning

Secondary Areas of Enquiry:

Aboriginal Perspectives
Structural Adjustments and Changing Demographics

Lead Researchers:

Assoc. Prof. Garry Middle - Centre for Sport and Recreation Research
Professor Marian Tye - Centre for Sport and Recreation Research

Research Team:

Dr Michael Hughes, Dr May Carter

Industry Partners

Department of Sport and Recreation WA
Department of Parks and Wildlife WA
Department of Water WA
Department of Mines and Petroleum WA
Forest Products Commission WA

Project Collection


Application of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis for Recreational Trails Decision Making in Western Australia: Final Technical Report