Monthly Archives: May 2011

ArcGIS Online World Topographic Map updates for May

The ArcGIS Online World
Topographic Map
(World_Topo_Map) was recently updated with several more
contributions from the user community.

The World Topographic Map includes new content for the Country of Suriname (72K – 1K) as well as new detailed, local content covering:

  • Chittendon County, VT
  • Chula Vista, CA
  • Loudoun County, VA
  • Memphis, TN
  • State of New Jersey (9K – 4K)

In addition, the basemap was updated for the following areas:

  • Country of Suriname (577K – 144K)
  • Narragansett Bay, RI (2M – 577K)
  • State of New Jersey (577K – 18K)
  • State of Oregon (577K – 18K)

Many of these contributions were made through the Community Maps Program. For more
information visit the Community Maps Program website or view
the live map of current and forthcoming contributors.

If you have questions, please post them in the ArcGIS Online forums.

Posted in ArcGIS Online, Services | Tagged , , , | Comments Off

How Healthy is your Water Utility Data?

One of the most over-looked components in any GIS implementation is the accuracy of your data. This year at UC, we’re introducing 30-minute “health checks” where our water utility experts can perform a diagnostic on your data to help you assess its overall quality. Using the ArcGIS Data Reviewer extension, Esri staff will run various automated checks on your water, wastewater, and stormwater data in file or personal geodatabase format.
If you’re interested in having your data analyzed, stop by the Geodatabase Management island in the Esri Showcase. Our experts will be available between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12th and Wednesday, July 13th, and between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Thursday, July 14th.
To ensure an appointment for your “Health Check” you can schedule in advance by emailing with your name, organization, contact information, and preferred data and time.
If you can’t make it to UC, here are some other resources to help you QA/QC your water utility data:

  • Data Reviewer for Infrastructure Template-Download this free template that includes pre-configured validation rules specific to water utilities.
  • Data Reviewer Videos-Learn more about using ArcGIS Data Reviewer for water utilities and see how to take advantage of the Infrastructure Template.
  • ArcGIS Data Reviewer Evaluation Software-Request a free, 60-day trial of ArcGIS Data Reviewer to start performing your own health checks.
  • Coming Soon – GIS Data Quality Best Practices for Water, Wastewater, and Stormwater Utilities. This new whitepaper provides an overview of quality assurance and quality control techniques to help ensure the quality of your data.

Posted in Editing, Local Government, Water Utilities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Get the Census 2010 Data & Report

 By Lucy Guerra

Census 2010 data and report are now available to Business Analyst Desktop users using the online access capabilities built into Business Analyst 10. All you need to do is download and install the Census 2010 Online Access patch.

Once you’ve done that… launch Business Analyst and go to Preferences. Click on the ‘Online’ tab and make sure that your BAO credentials are entered and that you’ve checked the online options on. You’ll see a new option Continue reading

Posted in Location Analytics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Esri's Disaster Response Program

For many years Esri has provided assistance in the wake of disasters throughout the world.  The support comes in many forms including software, data, hardware and people.  Not only is it about Corporate Citizenship and helping our users but it gets to the very essence of Esri-making the world a better place through geography.  We know that maps and Geographic Information System (GIS) technology can make a difference in saving lives, reducing impact, and expediting restoration.  The mission of the Esri Disaster Response Program is to support our users, our partners, and Esri personnel who respond to disasters worldwide. 

How does Esri support these individuals? Well, there are many people involved behind the scenes when an incident happens all working to help the response effort.  Some of the different ways in which Esri personnel support the response includes:

  • Coordinate requests for assistance and make sure they are met
  • Contact our users and make sure they are okay and they have what they need
  • Process temporary licenses of software and ship media as needed
  • Collect and provide pointers to relevant data sources
  • Coordinate offers of assistance and support from our business partners
  • Travel to the incident in order to support the response effort
  • Stand-up and provide round the clock technical support as needed
  • Build and update web mapping applications that help provide situational awareness
  • Provide updates and information on our website about each incident

Recent software advances have resulted in ArcGIS becoming easier, faster, and more powerful-all of which are critical for support in any disaster.  We have increased the presence of live maps on including more disaster specific applications such as the Latest News Map for example.  There are several different types of applications and we’ll put them up on our website for several different reasons. 

If the impact of a disaster is large enough on our planet and on our users, we will stand-up a website for the specific event.   One of the main purposes of this is to give GIS personal assigned to the incident more information about the geography and nature of the incident by bringing in relevant data sources that provide context.  We also include dynamic information from social media such as Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube.  Sometimes focused applications will be launched that include more detailed analytical tools and data that complement the available knowledge of an existing situation.

The main page for our disaster support is through this short  From this link you can access several permanent disaster sites that are specific to reoccurring disasters such as:

We mentioned that if the impact is large enough, we stand-up websites to support them and our users.  Here are a few examples of event specific sites that have been stood-up recently:

Some of the information from these applications and websites is of interest to the general public and news media.  We have created a short link that indexes the active disasters which can be quickly referenced for information  Additionally you can see all of the maps we’ve produced over the last

How can you use Esri technology to support your own response efforts? Through our Public Safety Resource Center we provide a series of maps and applications for emergency management that may be used to stand-up a new capability quickly in response to an incident.  These templates not only include an application that can be used as a starting point but also include an information model delivered through a geodatabase, and standard symbology for disaster response.  All of these templates and resources are best practices that we have collected from our users who are subject matter experts in this area.  The templates for emergency management include:

We hope you find this information and resources helpful.  We hope you never have to use them for response but, when disaster strikes remember that the Esri Disaster Response Program is standing by to help!

Posted in Public Safety | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Classifying Landsat image services to make a land cover map

By Rajinder Nagi, Esri Cartographic Product Engineer

Landsat 3 Thumb

In a previous blog entry, we discussed how you can use Landsat image services in ArcMap to see the change over time. In this blog entry, we dive further into Landsat image services and describe how you can create thematic land cover maps which can then be used for analyses, such as land cover change detection.

The image classification process involves conversion of multi-band raster imagery into a single-band raster with a number of categorical classes that relate to different types of land cover.

Continue reading

Posted in Imagery, Mapping, Migrate | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

ArcGIS Online World Street Map and reference layers updated

The ArcGIS Online servers were updated this week
(,,; many of the hosted ArcGIS Online maps were updated using data from the ArcGIS Data Appliance 4.0 Basemap Collection.
maps may be used for both 2D and 3D display.

The World Street Map (World_Street_Map) was
updated to include additional coverage for Australia/New Zealand and South America and includes enhancements to cartography at all
scale levels.

Sydney, Australia Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

The World Street Map also was updated as indicated at the following scales:

  • 1:577,000 to 1:144,000: All areas except Antarctica
  • 1:72,000 to 1:18,000: North America, Europe, Australia and New
    Zealand, parts of Asia including Japan, and parts of South America including
    Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Venezuela
  • 1:9,000:North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, parts of
    Asia including Japan, and parts of South America including Argentina, Brazil,
    Chile, and Venezuela
  • 1:4,500: North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, parts of
    Asia including Japan, and parts of South America including Argentina, Brazil,
    Chile, and Venezuela
The World Boundaries
and Places
(World_Boundaries_and_Places) and World Transportation (World_Transportation) reference layers were updated to include additional coverage for Australia/New Zealand and South America.
If you have previously used these maps, you may need to clear your cache in order
to see the updates.

If you have feedback or comments, please post them to our forum at

Posted in ArcGIS Online, Services | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off

What do you get when you cross the 3D Analyst extension with the Network Analyst extension?

3D networks, or course! Using 3D networks, you can model transportation networks in x, y, and z space and answer questions like…

•    What’s the shortest indoor route or cross-campus route?
•    What’s the shortest wheelchair-accessible route?
•    Which interior spaces of a building can be reached with a 100-foot fire hose?
•    What’s the most efficient way to deliver campus mail?
•    Where are the best locations to install a set of defibrillators or a set of printers?


All six network analysis solvers work on 3D network datasets so there are many more questions you can answer and studies you can perform.
(I’m no myrmecologist, but if I were, I might even use 3D networks to study the movement and spatial behavior of ants.)

The 5-minute test drive
How about taking five minutes or so to generate a 3D route on your own?
By following the steps in this section, you can use ArcScene and Network Analyst geoprocessing tools to find the best route between points in a multistory building.
What you need:

  • ArcGIS Desktop 10
  • A license for the ArcGIS Network Analyst extension
  • A license for the ArcGIS 3D Analyst extension
  • Network Analyst tutorial data from the ArcGIS Tutorial Data media.


  1. Using Windows explorer, navigate to the 3DRouting folder, which is included with the Network Analyst tutorial data. (By default, this tutorial data is installed at C:arcgisArcTutorNetwork AnalystWorkflow3DRouting.)
  2. Double-click 3DRouting.sxd.ArcScene opens showing a three-story building.
  3. Click the Catalog button on the Standard toolbar. The Catalog window appears.
  4. In the Catalog window, expand Home – Workflow3DRouting > 3DRoutingTools.tbs.
  5. Double-click Find best route. The Find best route dialog box opens; however, if a message appears instead indicating the tool isn’t licensed, follow these substeps:
    a.    Click OK.
    b.    Click Customize > Extensions on the menu bar to open the Extensions dialog box.
    c.    Check Network Analyst and click Close.
    d.    Try double-clicking Find best route in the Catalog window again.
  6. Click the Add Features button.


 7.    Click on a line that represents a hallway to add a stop.

8.    Repeat the previous two steps to add another stop.

9.    Click OK. The tool finds the fastest walking route between the stops and displays the route with a green tube.

You can use the tool again to find the best route that avoids stairs (for wheelchair accessibility) or avoids elevators (for emergency evacuation routes).

If you’d like to learn more, see the Help topic Analysis on 3D network datasets.

Content provided by Robert Garrity


Posted in 3D GIS, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Calculate chainage or distance of points along a polyline

Question: I have a series of polylines with nodes at random points along the line. Is there a way to calculate the chainage distance at each node from the start of the line? Even if a chainage can’t be calculated, is it possible to calculate the distance of each point from the start of the line?


Answer: For this you can use linear referencing. First convert the polylines to routes using the Create Routes tool, and then use the Locate Features Along Routes tool to write the route and measure information to a new event table.

Formerly a Mapping Center Ask a Cartographer  Q & A.

Posted in Mapping | Leave a comment

What happened to the Map Critique Station?

By Aileen Buckley, Mapping Center Lead

MC  thumbnail

Please note that this is a re-post of this blog entry.

In the past, you may have noticed or visited the Map Critique Station at the Esri User Conference (UC). This year, we’re taking a different approach to helping you improve your maps. Instead of the Map Critique Station, we’re providing a complete set of map evaluation resources that you can access before, during, and after the UC.

Continue reading

Posted in Mapping, Migrate | Tagged , | 9 Comments

Map document fails to open or save at ArcGIS 10 Service Pack 2

Some map documents (MXDs) that worked properly in ArcGIS 10 Service Pack 1
(SP1) or prior cannot be opened or saved after installing Service Pack 2 (SP2).

ArcMap may also crash at Service Pack 2 when switching from the Data
View to the Layout View or when working with map surrounds such as Legend, North
Arrow, Scale Bar, and Scale Text.
The issue occurs if the map document was created using the ‘Save a Copy’
functionality to save the map document to version 8.3, 9.0 or 9.1 and the map
document contains map surround elements.
Solution or Workaround

Posted in Mapping | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment