In the Village of Wheeling, like any community, various companies and organizations have to apply for permits when doing any type of construction work. Attached with these permits are maps showing the location of the work that is to be completed. Typically, a company or a subcontractor will provide the location maps to the village themselves, but in some instances the Village of Wheeling will provide the company with either data, so a more accurate map can be created, or a location map created by the village so that the company can accurately draw on a map where all construction will take place.
Recently, the village provided small maps showing aerial imagery and utility locations for a subcontractor replacing underground residential cable segments due to multiple cable faults. By providing the subcontractor with a map with aerial imagery and utilities, the village was able to see exactly where the cable segments would be replaced in relation to the houses and the utilities in the area because the subcontractor was able to draw the exact locations on the provided map. Processes like this allow the village to make a more informed decision on whether to approve a permit or have the subcontractor resubmit with more information. By using GIS, the village was able to see the exact location of construction based on the aerial imagery, and not with hand drawn maps they may not be to scale.
Local municipalities are always changing the way their communities are laid out in an effort to find the best fit for their residents as well as their visitors. These changes may come in the form of widening streets, tearing down and rebuilding infrastructure or possibly eliminating the ability to park on certain streets. For the Village of Morton Grove they were interested in investigating the latter as they looked to review their current parking restriction ordinances in order to help with future parking propositions.
For this analysis the village decided to enlist the services of the Geographic Information System (GIS) Department for its ability to map out all of the current parking restrictions geographically. The village believed that a map would provide a better visual representation of the current parking ordinance restrictions and also give them the proper means for review; much easier than reading these restrictions line for line in the written ordinance.
The design of the map was simple such that it only included the basic geographic street data as well as a color coded line where each unique color represented a different parking restriction. This map could then be printed or viewed electronically as means for review and analysis. Additionally, the underlying data behind the map was structured so that in-depth analysis could be conducted on any given street at any given time in order to retrieve ordinance information. The luxury of using the GIS in this case empowered the user to quickly compare ordinance information geographically and textually rather than performing the laborious task of searching through the ordinance documents on-line.
For years the Village of Morton Grove has used their own snow plow equipment to clean up the village owned parking lots so that residents, commuters, patrons and business employees have a safe place to park. Although this task has always been rooted in the guidelines of what the Public Works Department has to accomplish during a winter snow fall, it is not until recently that they have considered the possibility of contracting this work out for a lower price than what it may cost internally. Even though the idea of using outside resources to fulfill local duties is nothing new in local government, it is still up to the community to do their research on what they are asking an external contractor to do as well as what they can expect to be charged for these types of services.
Part of this researching process has forced the village to lean on their Geographic Information System (GIS) Department for the creation of maps and square footage figures for each parking lot that the village currently plows. Subsequently, what could normally take multiple hours of field measurements by numerous village employees, can now be generated in a matter of minutes using the existing data stored within GIS. After each parking lot is located, it is only a matter of creating overview maps for each parking lot with labels detailing the amount of square footage that would need to be plowed the contractor. These maps not only give a good geographic view of each lot, they can also help the internal staff with their decision making process regarding whether or not they want to move ahead with the contractual bidding process.
Land annexed into Elk Grove Village had been on display as a map in the Village Clerk’s Office for some time. This map served as a reference for village staff when receiving inquiries about unincorporated properties. Clerical staff realized the new GIS (Geographic Information System) program provided an opportunity to update the product.
The existing annexation information provided by the map was converted by the GIS staff into digital format and thorough investigation took place to resolve some overlaps, gaps, and missing annexations. When completed a new hard copy map was provided to the Clerk’s Office for display and an electronic PDF image was created as a reference for village staff and the public.
Every year when winter comes around the City of Park Ridge tends to buckle down and start planning their clean up procedures. Whether it is stocking up on salt in the salt dome or testing old equipment to make sure it is working properly, each task takes careful time and consideration. One operation that tends to happen under the radar but also has significant importance is the creation of snow plow maps.
All of the maps that are created are done so through the Geographic Information System (GIS) Department and are then printed in numerous sizes per the driver’s request. These maps are simple in nature but can easily help new and old snow plow drivers understand their routes and areas of coverage. Additionally, these maps help identify the speed bump locations throughout town as well as other helpful notes so snow plow drivers can navigate their routes in a safe and efficient manner. The maps were originally broken down by each snow plow zone but have since migrated into maps that display multiple zones. This change was made in order to give each driver the ability to plan a larger route for more than one zone rather than dealing with each zone specifically; thus resulting in faster completion times of routes and coverage areas. When all is said and done, it is easy to note that a more efficient use of time could potentially mean an upgrade of service for the residents of Park Ridge but who would have thought that maps would be a part of this bigger process.
Starting on October 4th the Village of Lincolnshire began its annual Leaf Collection Program. The program was completed on the first Friday in December. The program services approximately 1,707 residences.
GIS was used throughout the project. It was used at the onset for route planning, during for coordination and at the conclusion to analyze the success of the program. On December 13th the Mayor and Board of Trustees considered whether to continue the residential leaf collection service.
Currently, the Village picks up leaves in all residential neighborhoods, except private developments, from the first Monday in October until the first Friday in December. In 2010, more then 8,000 cubic yards of leaves were collected. This is an increase from the 6,700 collected in 2009. The options being considered by the Village Board include maintaining the program, creating a subscription program, or discontinuing the program. They will also be discussing options for the residents in the event that the program is discontinued.
Public Works and GIS staff created an analysis map that showed participation by street in the leaf collection program. According to the data collected by Public Works 91% of the streets eligible participated in the leaf collection program at some point. 11% of them participated every week and a majority of the streets had weekly participation between 75 and 99% of the weeks. A GIS map was created outlining the weekly street participation graduated by color. The map was included as part of a memorandum presented to the Mayor and the Board of Trustees.
The project was approved based on the report and supporting maps to take place again in 2011.
A significant part of any local government’s economic vitality relates to property development and improvements that require a building permit. Permitting fees provide vital income and can help to increase department budgets and the potential for capital improvement spending. As part of an effort to better track permit applications and highlight trends over time, the Village of Winnetka Community Development department asked the village GIS department to develop a map product to display permit locations.
All permit information for the village is stored in permit management software Permits Plus, so the first step in developing a final product is to export the desired information to a GIS compatible format, such as Excel. Once in this format, the permit data is mapped through a GIS application using the village’s comprehensive address database as a base. In addition to the location of each permit, the final GIS data layer also contains information on the type of permit issued for each address, allowing the final map product to display both the physical location and the type of permit being applied for.
Using this process, a quarterly mapping cycle has been developed, allowing Community Development staff to visualize where residential and commercial development is occurring across the village. Using this output from the GIS system provides the department with an efficient and cost effective method of tracking development trends, sharing information across departmental boundaries, and creating various budgetary reports.
Like many other Fire Departments, the City of Highland Park Fire Department finds itself having to maintain current level of converage with less resources. Determining where to effectively deploy these resources is an important part of maintaining the expected service level. The Fire Department approached the GIS Office about using GIS to evaluate where to locate Department resources and it was decided to create two series of map products.
The first map product used ESRI’s ArcView with the Network Analysis Extension to create maps showing response times in one minute increments from each station to the edge of the community. The response time routes follow the road network and include impediments such as one way streets and stop signs. The goal of these maps was to judge the impact on response times if one of the stations were closed.
The second set of maps displayed Fire Department response data for a period of one year. Various maps were created and categorized by type and or time. These maps helped identify hot spots of Fire Department responses. The goal of these maps was to analyze areas where the Fire Department mostly frequently responded, so that resources could be effectively deployed to respond to these areas in a timely manor.
By using GIS the Fire Department had a powerful tool to assist with adapting to a new reality. They gained the confidence to make difficult choices because they have the information to judge the impact of these decisions. Thus they will be able to maintain their current service level using fewer resources.
Riverside forestry management includes a tree inventory, tree management, and a tree planting program. The village’s GIS (Geographic Information System) supports all of these efforts as a medium for displaying and analyzing that information. The village forester identified an additional management strategy that is of interest to the local Landscape Advisory Commission and that is delineation of no planting zones.
These areas were provided to the GIS staff and created in the system making it easy for village personnel to view the existing tree inventory against the planned open spaces. Without a doubt, having a geographic representation of this plan will expedite future planting efforts and the open spaces will accentuate the unique landscape of Riverside.
On a monthly basis, the Village of Glenview’s Fire Department uses GIS and New World Systems to record and then execute queries for incident reporting (or NFIRS data) which is then submitted to the State. NFIRS or National Fire Incident Reporting System is a voluntary information system initiated and supported by the United States Fire Administration used for evaluating the nature and scope of the fire problem in the U.S. The importance or advantages for having these abilities are; identifying trends in the number of calls, the type of calls made, the origin of calls and then using this information to potentially plan a station relocation or to possibly justify the fire departments budget for purchasing new equipment and vehicles.
If it were not for GIS and New World Systems supplementing and essentially standardizing this for Glenview then record keeping and mapping would be less effective and lack any cost savings.
Managing parking across a community can be one of the most challenging functions of local government. Whether that parking area is owned by the municipality or managed by a private entity, ensuring accessibility and proper maintenance of these areas can be a challenge that often involves representatives from several government departments. To help understand the level of involvement needed, the City of Des Plaines Community and Economic Development (CED) department completed an inventory of all parking lots in the city to help with the enforcement of city ordinances related to parking lot maintenance.
To help identify which properties should be included in the inventory, the city’s GIS (Geographic Information System) department used the city address and parking lot data to generate a list of all properties with parking lots that required inspection. The city was then divided spatially into five inspection areas, with each area being assigned to a CED inspector, and a list for each area was derived from the original parking lot property list. Using these address lists, and maps created for each inspection area, the inspectors were able to quickly identify the properties they needed to visit, helping to streamline the data collection process and make it more efficient.