Using GIS to implement geographic methods for hospital location: An emergency management case study in the village of Gowanda, N.Y.
Ameroso, Emmanuelle M.
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In post-disaster locations, it is often necessary to re-locate damaged infrastructure to promote more pro-active planning. The Village of Gowanda, New York, experienced a disastrous flood in August 2009. Properties were destroyed, the water reservoir was polluted and two residents lost their lives. As a result of this disaster, the Village's only hospital was destroyed and has not been replaced. Due to the Village's need to locate a new hospital, a location analysis to determine the best placement for this facility, maximizing coverage and reducing the likelihood of any future damage from flooding, was necessary. Through geographic methods using ESRI's ArcGIS software, potential locations for a replacement hospital in the Village were identified. The identification of these suitable locations allowed for further evaluation of selected areas through the creation of service areas to investigate the Maximal Covering Location Problem (MCLP). Based on this research, the best potential hospital site was selected as a 2 acre parcel located at 38 Torrance Place, currently vacant land owned by the Village of Gowanda. As an application of geographically-based location analysis, the methods used in this research serve as useful tools for future facility re-location projects that must take into account wide varieties of geographic information.