This 9 page paper provides a proposal for a student wishing to conduct research in the county. A great deal of information on how to accomplish a geographical study as well as information on specific programs undertaken at the county, state and national level are included. Bibliography lists 7 sources.
I. Introduction When embarking on a geographic study, it is important to look at political
and physical boundaries as well as natural phenomena that are peculiar to the area. In focusing on Chester County in Pennsylvania, one sees a rather rural community, but there is
concern about the changing landscape. There is fear of losing farmlands, which is something that has affected the entire state to some extent.
In general, urban sprawl and a lack of urban planning have rendered the cities of Pennsylvania in poor shape. Urban poverty rates are twice as high as those of suburbia,
and the implementation of welfare reform is a special problem (Katz, 2000). Although welfare caseloads have dissipated somewhat in many cities, they are not shrinking very quickly (2000). In Philadelphia
County, for instance, 12% (2000, p. 66) of Pennsylvanians live there, but comprise 48% of all Pennsylvanians on welfare (2000). The urban population is disproportionately poor.
Farm preservation coupled with big-city concerns are important (Katz & Bernstein, 1998). In Pennsylvania, advocates for reform contend that the states heritage of small towns
and cities, are threatened by unsustainable growth (1998). In other words, Pennsylvania was once a sustainable entity as it had its own resources. As cities emerged, these were unable to
produce raw materials that could only be grown in rural regions. Without farm preservation, sustainability goes out the window. The environmental impacts of
losing farmland in Chester County, Pennsylvania is a particular concern. Chester County is hidden in close proximity to areas such as Philadelphia, Washington, DC and even New York City