Date of Award

Winter 1994

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Engineering Management & Systems Engineering

Committee Director

Derya A. Jacobs

Committee Member

Billie M. Reed

Committee Member

Resit Unal


Continental municipalities have derived many benefits from the economies of scale associated with a regional approach to facilities location and management planning. Centralized solid waste processing facilities is an example. Island communities, however, surrounded by miles of ocean, are constrained to a fragmented approach to the facilities location solution. This research was conducted to determine if the regional paradigm suggested in the literature is applicable to a set of island communities connected by an ocean transportation infrastructure. A linear programming (LP) model, constraints and data requirements were developed and applied to a network of islands. A series of hypothetical material recovery facilities (MRF) location scenarios were studied using actual and projected data obtained for the three-island territory of the U. S. Virgin Islands. In all cases, a significant reduction in capital construction expenditures was realized. For the selected data values in the research, transportation and operating costs increased as expected, but by a surprisingly small amount. This research concludes that the regional approach to economic and environmental facilities planning for island communities is valid. Future research involving larger systems of islands and stochastic processes is suggested.