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City of Corvallis


Alice A. Grucza
GIS Coordinator
City of Corvallis

The City
GIS Background/History
Key Decisions
Software what, where, why
Grant Project Playground Inventory
City of Corvallis

Population: 52,540
Area: 13.53 square miles
Budget: $61.3M Operating
$24.8M Capital
GIS Staff: 3 FTE (Coordinator, 2 Techs)
0.5 FTE Manager
OSU Intern Program
City of Corvallis - Geographic
Brief History Information

1985 - Decision to do mapping digitally using AutoCAD.

1989 - First GIS software applications purchased (GEO/SQL
and Oracle on OS2).
1989-1993 - Core elements of the GIS developed -
parcels, water, sewer lines. Topographic and planimetrics
captured within UGB (AutoCAD).
1993 - Benton County property database associated with
the parcel spatial data.
1994-95 - Transition to ArcCAD and ArcView ESRI
July 1995 - First ArcView users outside GIS are trained.
1995-98 - Development and refinement resulted in 121
themes and first orthophotos covering entire UGB.
City of Corvallis - Geographic
Brief History Information

1999 - Development of GISMO custom interface - common

portal linking GIS/Data Warehouse/other data sources.
1999 - Present - Data Steward responsibilities agreed on and
formalized. Experiments with field data collection methods.
2000 - GISMO use extended to other city departments and
mobile installations.
2002 - Field data collection using ArcPAD on an iPAQ for
Streets Division (street light and sign inventory).
2003 ICMA Grant - Playground Inventory and Maintenance
Management. Extend GIS field data collection to P & R.
2003 ArcIMS implementation - new platform for Inter/Intranet
map services.
City of Corvallis - Geographic
Key Decisions Information

Initial Software
Public Access to data. Never marketed GIS
Quality of data accuracy builds confidence.
Build on small steps and successes. Recognize GIS is a
long-term investment.
New software can be the needed key, or suicide.
Data stewardship concept. Users build and maintain the
system and retain responsibility for their data. Ownership.
Organizational focused GIS vs. departmental
Build a broad base of user support for the system.
Providing training and ongoing support are imperative.
Automation of routine processes is critical!
City of Corvallis - Geographic
Software Information

City of Corvallis uses ESRI software products. These

have become regional de facto standard.
Different software product for different needs and
ArcINFO - Professional GIS software for creation and maintenance of
GIS data. (Mapping & GIS staff)
ArcView - User software for those requiring analysis and custom map
creation capabilities and/or data stewards.
GISMO - Custom City of Corvallis interface software for viewing,
query, standard reports, mailing labels, simple maps.
Arc Explorer - User software for those just needing to view data.
(Free from the web
ArcPAD Field data entry and maintenance.
ArcIMS Intranet and Internet mapping services
GIS - Geographic
Software Information

ArcView: Data Stewards for GIS data creation and

maintenance. Custom solutions.
Example: Custom ArcView data entry application for
site address maintenance.
GIS - Geographic
Software GISMO Information

GISMO - Custom Corvallis interface software.

Developed by PW with consultant (GeoNorth) in 1999.
Visual Basic and Map Objects.
Currently over 150 users - desk and mobile installs.
Data entry point for PWs maintenance management
Common portal to information from many different
programs, departments, sources, etc.
Links many data types to their geographic location. Example:
scanned documents
License cost is minimal (less than $90 each install)
Easy to use. Requires minimal training to use effectively.
GIS - Geographic
Software - GISMO Information

Designed for PW - now used throughout the

organization, Planning, Development, Fire, Police,
Dispatch, City Managers Office, Park & Recreation, etc.
The City of Corvallis Public Works Department
uses GIS and Data Warehouse technologies on a daily
Fire Department Mapping Prior to GIS
Current Mobile Mapping System
Fire Department

Nine current laptop

computers on first
out apparatus
4 engines
1 truck
1 command
3 ambulances
GIS - Geographic
Software ArcPAD Information

ArcPAD first used by Street

Division for sign inventory
Project that had failed with three
prior software systems now
exceeded all expectations.
Partial inventory was estimated to
take more than a year.
Completed in less than 4 months
Very successful embraced by
field personnel.
GIS - Geographic
Software ArcPAD System

Why was this software/hardware combination successful?

No keyboard required.
Easy and simple to use.
Flexible if crews want changes most are
easy and quick to do.
Portability fits in a pocket.
Links directly to GIS direct shapefile editing
Made the crews work easier and more
Vast array of add-on accessories for iPAQ
GIS - Geographic
Software ArcPAD System

Field data collection

is a key component in
the Data Cycle
Provides a tool for
crews to manage their
Faster turn around
GIS - Geographic
Software ArcPAD System

ICMA Grant Project Playground Equipment Inventory and

Maintenance Management Program

Expand technology to a low-tech department

Streamline regular reporting and management efforts
Add significant GIS features into the system
Low (and getting lower) budget opportunities
Eager staff looking for ways to improve service
Partnership with Oregon State University CS 461-462 Team
GIS - Geographic
Software ArcPAD System

Data schema developed

Programming identified
Process outlined
Form creation
GIS - Geographic
Future . . . Information
GIS - Geographic
Why use GIS in Corvallis? Information

Geographic or location base to most city information and

services (FGDC study says 80% of govt data is location
Better Information and Analysis tools for decision making
and communicating.
Same information to everyone - not different versions,
Public access to information (future - web access)
Record retained of changes over time.
Dynamic resource - information increasing.
Data + Mapping - production of custom maps.
-- Better Customer Service!
City of Corvallis - Geographic

Its simply ...

Smart Maps
Smart Service
Geographic Information System



Geographic The World


Decision Support

Geography matters to the City of Corvallis!

City of Corvallis

City GIS data (including orthos) available at:

CDs also available at the Valley Library and

Corvallis Benton County Library or available for
purchase ($10 each) at PW.
PC Installation in Van
First installation
late 1999

Industrial PC case
Std. Keyboard
15 Flat Screen
Inverter mounted in cargo area
PC Installation - Meter Van
2nd installation,
done in early
Same PC case,
monitor and
keyboard (in a
slide-in tray).
Added a printer.
Inverter mounted
behind the
and ArcPad.
PC Installation 1-ton Service Trucks

Most recent installations

Dual 12v


PC is a slim-profile case, mounted behind the seat.

Has dual hard-drives w/additional cooling fans
Same flat-screen monitor
Keyboard is wireless (infra-red)
Has a wireless Ethernet network card