Small-Government GIS

by James Denning, Asst. Editor; Civil Engineering Magazine, ASCE, 345 E. 47th St., New York, NY 10017,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1993, Vol. 63, Issue 6, Pg. 52-54

Document Type: Feature article


Geographic information systems, or GISs, have shown great potential for use as a tool by public engineers working on the state and municipal level, but the time and money required to put a GIS together have slowed the full implementation of the technology. Nonetheless, a growing number of agencies and departments are discovering the benefits of GIS as a tool that combines a wide variety of data from disparate formats in an easily comprehended way. In Raleigh, NC, GIS is helping analyze storm-water flows and will soon aid roadway safety design. Wisconsin's Land Information Board is helping cities and counties build a state-wide GIS that is based on local needs and data. Wisconsin's DOT is using GIS to help management pavement repairs, and coordinate tables of roadway conditions with accident reports and digitized photographs to study the safety of the state's trunk highway system. And in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, a 15-year effort has blossomed into a full-tilt system that is used by virtually every part of the city administration, from the DOT to the Parks Department. In the end, GIS will allow engineers to provide their ultimate clients, the public, with a higher level of service, in less time, for less money.

Subject Headings: Highway and road management | Traffic accidents | Geographic information systems | Information systems | Traffic safety | Highway and road design | Safety | Highway and road conditions | North Carolina | United States

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