Method for assessment of forest road network requirement in a mountain area

Raffaele Cavalli, Elisa Cappellari, Stefano Grigolato


Active management of productive forests requires a precise evaluation of the
accessibility to the forest area in terms of quantity and quality. Spatial analysis tools, such
as GIS (Geographic Information Systems), are useful for evaluating the expansion of the
forest road network.
This study aims to develop a decision support model for determining the forest area opened up by a forest road network. This approach considers the interest in
harvesting the forest area and the technical feasibility of road building.
For the selected study area located in an alpine region, the results report that the current network is well developed (qualitative analysis), but not fully practicable (qualitative analysis). Extending and improving the current forest road network could notably increase the area of forest served. As a consequence, this would increase the feasibility of utilizing up to 73% of the prescribed yield.


forest road network; GIS; forest operations; AHP

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