Land Suitability Assessment for Disaster-prone Villages Relocation

Land Suitability Assessment for Disaster-prone Villages Relocation

H.L. Lin

Department of Urban Planning, National Cheng-Kung University, Taiwan

31 March 2015
| Citation



Lessons learnt from 921 Jiji Earthquake’s recovery, suitable relocation sites are critical to land planning institutions to implement disaster recovery plans and to propose creative solutions to address unforeseen difficulties quickly. It is the time matter in disaster recovery and reconstruction management that the longer it takes, the higher uncertainty it becomes, resulting in lengthy, complex relocation processes. A virtual relocation land reserve system is suggested that site alternatives for relocation are pre-prepared through a land suitability assessment. To this end, the concept and advanced GIS techniques of disaster risk management were applied to disaster-prone village identification and the land suitability analysis for safety relocation land assessment. The article first created disaster risk maps of Taiwan to see the distribution of the disaster-prone village, in which disaster hazardousness and vulnerability were discussed. The relocation projects of 921 Jiji Earthquake were also reviewed and concluded that there are six key factors for successful relocations, which are land regulations, location safety, financial feasibility, social and cultural connections, economic vitality, and awareness and willingness of community. The factors were further developed into criteria and were used in the land suitability analysis of relocation site assessment for disaster-prone areas.


disaster recovery, land suitability analysis, relocation, risk analysis, risk map, vulnerability


[1] Jung, S.W., “Never again”: narratives of suffering and memory of the 9/21 earthquake in Taiwan. Taiwan Journal of Anthropology, 7(1), pp. 35–65, 2009.

[2] 921 Earthquake Relief Foundation, available at

[3] Shieh, J.C., Chang, R., Tsai, P.H. & Wang, C.K., Review of post-disaster village relocation policy in Taiwan. Journal of Housing Studies, 17(2), pp. 81–97, 2008.

[4] Chang, Y.-M., Tribe reconstruction planning (Chapter 5). A Study on the Reconstruction of San-Cha-Keng Atayal Aboriginal Tribe after 921 Earthquake Disaster, Master thesis, Department of Architecture: Tunghai University, pp. 5-1 5-20, 2007.

[5] Debris Flow Prevention Information System, Soil and Water Conservation Bureau, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, available at

[6] Disaster Prevention Information Service Network, Water Resource Agency, Ministry of Economic Affairs, available at

[7] Interpretation of Geological Features Service System, Central Geological Survey, Ministry of Economic Affairs, available at  

[8] Morakot Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council, Executive Yuan, available at 88flood.

[9] Amendola, A., Management of change, disaster risk, and uncertainty: an overview.  Journal of Natural Disaster Science, 26(2), pp. 55–61, 2004. [10] OpenISDM, available at

[11] Office of the United Nations disaster relief co-ordinator. National Disasters and Vulnerability Analysis, 1979.

[12] Lin, H., An approach to access suitable lands for disaster mitigation. WIT Transactions on the Built Environment, 133, ISSN 1743-3509, 2013. doi: dman130201

[13] Taolin Digital Surveying Engineering Co. Ltd., The Primary and Revised Field Investigation and Security Assessment of Disaster Indigenous Tribe Villages by Typhoon Morakot, Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan, 2009.

[14] Charng-Feng Engineering Consultants Ltd., Morakot Rehabilitation Housing Project – the site of Wu-Li-Pu Village, Jea-Shian, Kaohsiung, Kaohsiung City Government, 2009.

[15] Shieh, L.S., Su, W.R., Wu, C.R. & Hwang, J.H., The field investigation for flooding and the development of flooding information management system. NGIS Quarterly, 61, pp. 27–40, 2007.

[16] Hsu, P.H., Wu, S.Y. & Lin, F.T., Disaster management using GIS technology: a case study in Taiwan. Proceedings of the 26th Asia Conference on Remote Sensing, eds. Asian Association on Remote Sensing (AARS), Curran Associates, Inc., pp. 1510– 1519, 2005.