Lake Forest will have access to the web version of MapOffice™ beginning June 1st. The month of May was spent preparing the base data needed to get MapOffice™ up and running, which involved loading previous GIS data into the GIS Consortium standardized database.
MapOffice™ will provide staff and residents with information for each parcel and address in the city, which ranges from school districts and voting information to garbage pick up days. A link to the Lake County Assessor’s website for each individual address is also provided to gain further information regarding building and property dimensions, assessed value, and sales history. Tools will be available to the user to provide further analysis if needed, such as measuring and links to both Google Street View and Bing Maps Bird’s Eye View.
Information commonly used by staff to assist residents will now all be available in one place, increasing efficiency, as well as providing basic information to residents who may have otherwise had to call in to ask about in the past. Work continues on data creation for MapOffice™ Advanced, which is scheduled to be available on the City intranet by mid-June.
FEMA defines an area of repetitive loss as: "a property for which two or more claims of more than $1,000 have been paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) within any 10 – year period since 1978." The properties only represent 1% of all of NFIP’s insurance policies, but have accounted for nearly one-third of the claim payments. FEMA provides all repetitive loss information to every community each year and if a community wishes to participate in the Community Rating System (CRS) program, then they must map out each area and property and submit the maps to FEMA.
The Village of Wheeling participates in the CRS program and has a number of repetitive loss properties. Because of this, the GIS department was asked to put together maps showing the locations of all repetitive loss properties in the village. Each map shows the location of the repetitive loss area with repetitive loss properties highlighted. Each affected property lists the dates for each flood insurance claim. By mapping out the locations of each property, the village meets the requirements set by FEMA for documenting repetitive loss areas and for participating in the CRS insurance program, therefore allowing it’s resident’s to obtain a better price for flood insurance.
Every year the Village of Oak Brook performs improvements on roads, water main and infrastructure as a part of their capital improvement program. Prior to the improvements starting, the village is required to notify all residents that are directly and indirectly impacted by the improvements.
In the past, the village scanned and copied a paper village address map to highlight the addresses affected by the improvements. This proved to be a tedious task as maps had to be created for each address. In order to make this process run more smoothly, the Village asked for the help of the GIS department.
Through the use of GIS, maps highlighting the addresses impacted by the improvements were created. Residents that were primarily and secondarily affected by the improvements were shown in different colors with their address number and the latest aerial imagery. Residents that were primarily affected were those address located adjacent to the improvement site. Residents that lived in the general area of the improvement site were classified as secondary. For 2010, residential mailings have been sent for the paving, water main and crack sealing projects.
The Village of Norridge has begun mapping out traffic accident information in an effort to try and limit the amount of accidents in high traffic areas and understand why accidents occur in low traffic areas. A map was created using data provided by the police department detailing the locations of traffic accidents by month. Accident locations were added to the map and categorized by type (property damage, personal injury, village property, fatality). Eventually, as data from previous months is added to the database, patterns will begin to emerge.
By mapping the location of each accident from month to month, patterns can begin to emerge and provide the police department and engineering with a visual representation of the accidents. The locations can then be analyzed to see if there is as abnormal amount of accidents in low traffic areas. The village engineering department can then analyze these locations against village data, such as the sign inventory, to determine if there is a specific cause for those accidents. By using GIS to map out traffic accident locations, the Village of Norridge can have a better understanding on where the accidents occur in the village and give them a first step in determining why they are happening.
One of the disadvantages that may arise while creating an informative map is the amount of time it can take to create new data where it does not previously exist. But what if that data already existed in a format that you could use? The advantage of using a Geographic Information System (GIS) for mapping is the system’s versatility to handle the other formats of data, which in the end can save the user a lot of time and money.
For the Village of Morton Grove, the ability to use a Computer Aided Design (CAD) drawing within GIS meant that the village could take existing data from the consultant and use it in-house to create the maps that they desired for their Dempster Streetscape plans. Once the CAD data was received by the village, it was then imported into GIS, rectified to fit the correct geographical location and subsequently used like any other data layer already in the map. This approach was much more efficient because it turned the control over to the village as well as removed the time that would be wasted calling the consultant every time a small adjustment needed to be made to the map. In addition, the end map product reflected a custom design that the village knew would be relatable to their residents when they reviewed the map at the Dempster Street Improvement open-house.
It is not always easy to obtain CAD data from a consultant, but if a digital drawing is accessible it is well worth the time to request it, use it and in the end, benefit from the time and money you save by not creating data that could be considered redundant.
The Village of Lincolnwood’s Geographic Information System (GIS) team has been hard at work developing tools to increase productivity and simplify employee’s workflows related to geographic data. Through MapOffice™ Advanced, a customized web mapping application, Village employees have many tools aimed at extracting tabular data using geographic contents.
The latest is the Water Main Isolation Tool, is aimed at providing Village water maintenance crews the ability to find all water valves connected to a section of water main. Water crews can now simply click on a water main and find all connected valves eliminating field work and research. This in turn will save not only time, but also water during a main break which can become very problematic during the winter months.
In addition to showing connected valves, the tool documents affected water hydrants, which have importance if a fire were to break out in the vicinity during a main break. Village water crews are very excited to use this new tool as they had said many good things during a demonstration last week. New tools are routinely published in MapOffice™ Advanced on a monthly basis.
A recent development in the Glenview Geographic Information System (GIS) has been the creation of the firework fallout locations for the Fire Department. The information created includes the site locations and the fallout buffers for each location. Fallouts are determined by the size of the shell, and a one inch shell has a radius or fallout of 70 feet.
The Fallout map is available for the Fire Department and or all Village staff at any time through GIS or the PDF map folder which is located in the all employee accessible directory. This data provides an excellent resource for quickly referencing site locations and assisting with or containing any potential fallout related fires or problems.
A recent initiative for the Elk Grove Village Geographic Information System (GIS) has been the creation of police beat and sub beat information including coordination with the Northwest Central Dispatch Center who manages the Village’s emergency calls.
A desire of the Elk Grove Village Police Department is to better understand the dynamics of workload throughout the village and if certain areas could benefit from increased or an adjustment of patrol units. To realize the demand of the beats and sub beats the GIS was used to calculate statistics for 2008 and 2009 calls for service. Summarizing statistics by beat which as of now are generally defined by certain zoning types allows for an understanding of overall police activity. Further analysis by time of day showed which shifts are the busiest as well.
This information will provide a decision support tool as a restructure of beats is considered and can begin without interruption to dispatch services by testing dispatch changes along existing beat boundaries. Additional investigation of the data may suggest that patterns exist at even smaller time ranges which would suggest a shift of patrol at certain times of day or that certain types of incidents occur more often in some areas and result in a longer period of time at those types of calls.
After making use of these types of analysis it will be determined which are the most influential factors to determine patrol needs and can continue to be performed over time to validate trends and truly understand the policing demands.
Every now and again a municipality is faced with the decision on whether or not to allow a new establishment the rights to sell liquor. Many questions are raised on where this potential establishment will be located as well as how late this establishment will stay open. The City of Park Ridge was recently confronted with these questions and had to make a decision on whether or not to allow an establishment these rights. Within their decision making process they decided to use the Geographic Information System (GIS) as a method for how this late night establishment might affect the local residential neighborhoods.
Considering the city already maintains a zoning map annually, the only part left to do was to give a geographic location to all liquor license locations as well as apply a one thousand foot buffer distance to each location as a guide to how many residents might be affected within this distance from the proposed establishment location. If the buffer area of the proposed establishment location affected more residential homes than the other existing liquor license locations, the site may not be considered as optimal and thus may not pass.
Although GIS would not be making the final decision on whether this establishment would be allowed, the ability to map out all existing liquor license locations and their proximity to areas zoned as residential was quite valuable as well as an efficient use of existing data.
The Special Service Area 16 came up for it’s first three year review in the Spring of 2010. The City Manager required methods to determine if the Special Service Area had fulfilled it’s goal of maintaining an economically vibrant downtown. He decided that a study of the location units used for retail, services, office, and vacant units would supply the required information
The first part of the project was joint field survey conducted by Engineering and Community Development to determine the first floor uses of each building within the Special Service Area. They walked the entirety of the Special Service Area and record the use of each commercial unit. The survey results were entered into an Excel spreadsheet and given to the GIS Office.
The GIS office reviewed the survey and quickly realized that many buildings have multiple businesses associated with them. Therefore, it was decide to split the buildings into appropriate units and assign the business information to each unit. These units were categorized by commercial use to create three final products, Retail Map, Service and Office Map. The Director of Community Development reviewed the maps and then GIS Office submitted to the City Manger.
By using GIS, the city was able to create maps that showed specific economic activity within the Special Service Area. For example, clusters of vacant and retail-orientated business were found on the maps. These maps are helping the City Manager to make the case that the Special Service Area is successful in maintaining the economic vitality of the Central Business District.
Finding the nearest feature is something that local government employees do everyday. It might be finding the nearest hydrant in event of a fire, nearest water valve for shutoff, or nearest schools and medical facilities in event of an emergency. With the nearest feature tool this search can be customized for as many features as you want and what feature you may be searching for.
In the past government had to rely on paper maps to measure the distance to a nearest community asset. With the deployment of MapOffice™ and the find nearest feature tool within seconds of clicking or entering a property you can find the nearest feature that interests the user. It might be schools, hydrants, parks, valves, place of worship, community facilities, landmark or medical facilites. As the GIS system grows so will the possible features to query. Finding the nearest feature is done quickly and easily using MapOffice™ Advanced.
Currently only available in MapOffice™ advance this feature will soon be made available to the public as well. Typically residents choose communties based on the community assets available to them (schools, parks, emergency protection). By providing this tool at the public level residents can find the nearest park, place of worship or school. This public feature will be available at the end of May.
The Village of Skokie’s Water and Sewer Department rely heavily on data within the Geographic Information System (GIS) for planning and field work. Field Note Mapbooks (FNM) were created to simplify the process of editing the data and bridge the gap between the field crews knowledge and the data projected in the Village’s GIS. Employees can make comments and corrections in the paper FNM and GIS will check the book on a quarterly basis to incorporate the changes. For example, if a valve is not shown or shown in the wrong location, an employee can draw and comment on the valve showing the correct location and providing all other important information. This process was just implemented and the first changes have been completed this month.
Although Geographic Information System (GIS) are used to store and retrieve data often times in a highly complex fashion, they also provide a medium for map simple production. A special event map is a regular request of GIS professionals and can be generated in a relatively short time frame with good communication between the event coordinators and the map maker.
Because the Village of Riverside has invested in a GIS program, they are able to create many graphic products to support their day-to-day business and community events such as the Riverside Arts Fair, Farmer’s Market, and race events. These products provide a shared perspective and help organize efforts for event staff and attendees alike.