Sponsorship Opportunity: University of Vermont (UVM) Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) Mapathons

June 9, 2016

mapathon

In crisis situations like an earthquake, volcanic eruption, avalanche or epidemic, first responders need up-to-date digital maps to navigate the affected area. However, many remote regions around the world simply do not have the data necessary for aid groups to safely traverse city streets and locate rural villages post-disaster. In the event of a disaster, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) mobilizes volunteer mappers around the world to focus their efforts on data deficient regions.

UVM’s HOT holds mapathons once or twice a month at a computer lab in the Aiken Center on the UVM campus in Burlington. Read about recent mapathons here: http://letters-sal.blogspot.com/2016/06/uvm-humanitarian-openstreetmap-team.html and contact mapathon coordinator Noah Ahles to be added to the notification list: noah.ahles@gmail.com Cell: 914-960-4613

Your company or organization can help support these effective volunteer events:

  • Help pay for refreshments for the volunteers!
  • Send volunteers!
  • Contribute directly to the International Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team in honor of the UVM Team (let us know so we can thank you and give you credit!) – https://hotosm.org/donate
  • We will acknowledge your contributions at our events and at our event registration web pages.
  • Contact Noah (above) if you would like to contribute.

 

Map of Sri Lanka before mapathon

SriLankaBefore

 

Map of Sri Lanka after mapathon

SriLankaAfter


Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team – Nepal, Mexico and Afghanistan

December 3, 2015

From Noah Ahles at the UVM Spatial Analysis Lab

Gulmi_Nepal_mapathon

Imagery of Kathmandu, Nepal provided by Bing

The last week in October was exceptionally busy for members of the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team at UVM. On October 25th the Spatial Analysis Lab hosted a mapathon to create detailed digital maps in Nepal in response to a massive landslide that blocked the Kali Gandaki River. Coincidentally, hurricane Patricia had just hit Mexico’s western coast and we were able to delegate a team of volunteers from Tri Delta to work in Puerto Vallarta. Thankfully, Mexico was well prepared and there was a minimal loss of life, although there was severe damage to infrastructure as a result of flooding and winds. Despite breaking records for highest sustained wind speeds globally and barometric pressure in the Western Hemisphere, Patricia quickly dissipated once it made landfall after hitting a steep gradient of elevation into a mountainous region.

Read more here: http://letters-sal.blogspot.com/2015/12/humanitarian-openstreetmap-team-nepal.html


VT Mapping News: RFP for Parcel Mapping Posted, Bridge and Culvert Data Videos Posted!

January 14, 2015

grantees_2014_2015RFP for Parcel Mapping Posted: 

Lemington today, Brunswick, Stannard, and Sutton coming soon…

I am excited to report that I have posted the first of (at least) 4 parcel mapping RFPs that will be made available in the next month or so: Lemington, VT!

http://vcgi.vermont.gov/about_us/projects/nvpdp

The link for the RFP is near the bottom of the page, but feel free to check the other information about this funded project (which will be done at the end of this year).

youtube_vtransVTrans Youtube Videos of Bridge and Culvert Data Workshop:

In October 2014, the Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) hosted a workshop to help GIS users of Vermont data understand what bridge and culvert information is available, and which data set is appropriate for their needs.

A series of videos of the information presented at the workshop have been produced by Eric Goldman, Multimedia Specialist, and Sara Moulton, GIS Specialist of the VTrans Division of Policy, Planning and Intermodal Development. The videos can be accessed on YouTube at


Survey to Collect Input on the Value of Parcel Data in Vermont

December 9, 2014

ParcelsScreenshot.285px

 

VTrans has engaged the services of AppGeo to perform a Return on Investment Study as well as a Parcel Lifecycle Report. They are seeking input from a wide variety of people who live or work in VT in order to gather knowledge and opinions about the value of parcel data (one of the key ingredients of a tax map). Visit the Statewide Parcel Data page to learn more ( http://vcgi.vermont.gov/parcels ) or click here to go directly to the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/VTParcelROI.


Grants Awarded for Northern VT Parcel Mapping!

March 24, 2014

grantees_crop

14 towns will receive funding from VCGI…

The Northern Border Regional Commission, whose focus is to help address the community and economic development needs of the most severely distressed portions of the Northern Forest region, awarded VCGI a grant for $169,100 in late 2013. The purpose of the project is to provide support to a subset of towns in Vermont’s Northern Border Region so that they can successfully contract with the private sector for the creation or update of parcel data for their town that meets the VT GIS Parcel Data Standard. Planning for a successful economic future in Vermont’s Northern Border Region requires visualizing current and future conditions. Maps are a vital tool in that process, and many towns in the region are hampered by old, inaccurate, or absent parcel maps. Modern mapping requires digital map data (also called GIS data) from a variety of sources, including municipal tax maps – the source of parcel data.

VCGI and its Regional Planning Commission Partners (NRPC, LCPC, NVDA) are looking forward to working with the following towns to support their effort to create or update and improve their parcel data: Derby, Troy, Jay, Glover, Holland, Waterford, Burke, Enosburg, Berkshire, Franklin, Sheldon, Wolcott, Eden, and Elmore.  In addition to providing about $160,000 worth of financial support, RPC and VCGI staff will provide technical specifications, template documents to guide the towns through a Request for Proposals process (in some cases), a mapping contract template, and support drafting a plan for future data maintenance to keep the data useful into the future.

This project is part of a larger effort to develop a statewide parcel data program in VT to ensure up-to-date, consistent, and useful parcel data is developed and maintained for all towns. The VT Enterprise GIS Consortium oversees that effort.

For more information: lesliep@vcgi.org or 802-882-3002


Democracy Depends Upon Access to Government Geodata

December 12, 2013

From Sensors and Systems:

from sensorsandsystems.com

from sensorsandsystems.com

“Is my property being taxed fairly?”
“Are zoning variances being granted in a consistent manner?”
“Is my flood insurance rate justified?”

 

These are the types of questions concerned citizens may ask, both in their own interest, and in the interest of maintaining a responsive and equitable democracy. Our democratic system of government is supposed to conduct the public’s business fairly and consistently within the explicit directives of the citizens’ elected representatives. But how can citizens know if that is happening? And how can citizens know that their representatives are actually conducting “the people’s business” rather than their own? Transparency is required for maintaining our governments’ accountability to its citizens.

 

Transparency means giving citizens access to their governments’ records, to the same information that government agencies themselves use to make decisions and conduct operations. With it, interested persons can understand, verify, and possibly challenge a governmental action. Since most governmental actions impact specific locations, geographic information is critical to governmental accountability, and GIS technology and professionals are critical to analyzing that information.

– See more at: http://www.sensorsandsystems.com/article/features/32431-democracy-depends-upon-access-to-government-geodata.html#sthash.BL6JWJAy.ZjdkA9g7.dpuf