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Indiana University Northwest

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Northwest Indiana GIS Forum
Meeting Notes
Thursday, January 23, 2003
Meeting Location: Indiana University Northwest

Members in Attendance: Martin Brown, City of Gary Planning Dept.; John Hannel, Woolpert; Beth Hodge, Pangea; Betty Kiechle, Lake County Surveyor’s Office; Kevin Miller, IDEM; Cele Morris, IU Northwest/NWI Center for Data and Analysis; Robert Strimbu, City of Gary Environmental Affairs Dept.; Tim Sutherland, IU Northwest/NWI Center for Data and Analysis

Local Implementation
The City of Gary Planning Department has recently hired Martin Brown as their lead person for GIS. He will help to assess what needs to be done for centralization of the system. The Planning, Environmental Affairs and Police Departments are currently the major users of the data that exists in Gary. Future city-wide GIS implementation is anticipated.

Woolpert is currently working on projects outside Northwest Indiana. As GIS provider for the City of Indianapolis, they are providing a number of services including activities related to ArcIMS and Geodatabase management. They are also working on Indy’s master address database and hope to include 3-D addressing for multilevel downtown buildings. John Hannel is also a member of the INGISI conference committee. He encourages our membership to be sure to register for the upcoming 2003 INGISI conference to be held Feb. 27 and 28 at the Indianapolis Sheraton at Keystone Crossing. See INGISI’s website for information regarding registration and agenda . Conference activities this year will include a Map Gallery. Conference participants will judge the two-category competition (students and all others). A cash prize will be awarded in the student competition. Students are strongly encouraged to submit maps. Last year approximately 300 people registered for the conference.

An introductory GIS class (undergrad/3 credit hour) is currently underway at IU Northwest offered thru SPEA and taught by George Olmsted. ArcGIS training will be held in IU Northwest’s lab (see training section).

Kodak Citipix has been sold to GlobeXplorer and Pangaea is again a reseller for this aerial photography product. Aerial photography flown in 2002 for Lake County, IN is available through this program. GlobeXplorer has made changes in the pricing based on mileage increments ($299.00/mi2). The price of the imagery will decrease with age. New photography will be flown in 2004. Future photography that includes Porter and LaPorte counties might be possible dependent on interest. Pangaea continues projects with the City of Chicago and Bloomington, IN.

Kevin Miller at IDEM is involved with the INGISI Education Committee. They are in the process of creating a website that will include information about how to establish a GIS. The site will be operational by the end of February in conjunction with the annual conference. Work continues on a project mapping land quality sites associated with streams having a fish consumption level greater than 5. Sixty-one such facilities exist statewide with 35 located in Lake County. The US Steel CAMU is almost ready to receive dredging from the Grand Calumet River. IDEM has received aerial photography from the City of Gary and has converted them into a more useful format. It has been proposed that GPS equipment monitor the status of the dredging with progress being updated via the Indiana Geological Survey’s, Lake Rim website.

The City of Gary Environmental Affairs Department is working on a database of brownfields. There is no new information regarding the status of city’s request for proposals for a GIS needs assessment.

Lake County Surveyor’s Office reports that they have received GIS funding for at least five years. The county has contracted for GIS support with DLZ. Sidwell will act as subcontractor. Other county departments are included in GIS discussions. County Surveyor, George Van Til, may be available for our next meeting to give the Forum an update.

The 2003 GIS Conference sponsored by INGISI will be held Thursday and Friday, February 27 & 28, at the Indianapolis Sheraton Hotel and Suites at Keystone Crossing. See the INGISI website for registration information and conference agenda. A Decision Maker’s breakfast will be held Thursday 9-11:30. This should be an informative discussion on GIS implementation for any local officials. The NWI GIS Forum will have a booth at the conference. We may want to include a brochure on our experience on how to start up a GIS User’s Group. Information on why it’s important and how to form such a group would be informational. We also have a geocoded map of INGISI survey results for Northwest Indiana that can be included. INGISI has set a goal of 100% statewide GIS coverage for the seven framework data layers within 3 to 5 years. Investigation into funding for local framework is underway.

IU Northwest has upgraded their GIS lab. New hardware and software for 19 machines have been installed. Both ArcView 3.2 and ArcGIS 8.2 are available. An Intro GIS course will be offered for the spring semester thru SPEA and taught by George Olmsted. The course will be taught utilizing ArcGIS 8.2.

Training & Workshops
Becky will conduct a two-day, ESRI certified, ArcView GIS 8.x training session Thursday and Friday, January 30 and 31, 2003, in the IU Northwest GIS lab. IDEM has furnished the books for the training. Spaces for the January session are currently filled. An additional two-day session will be held at IU Northwest on Thurs. – Fri. March 20-21. Any GIS Forum members interested in training should contact Becky at 219-853-6413x516, McKinleyB@hmdin.com

EPA Grant Status
Work has continued updating datasets for the IGS, LakeRim GIS site. TIGER/Line files representing Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties and their associated census tracts, block groups and designated places have been merged to create Northwest Indiana shape files for counties, tracts, block groups and designated places. Various Census 2000 demographics are included in the attribute tables. Metadata has been created for each shape file. These files can be accessed and downloaded via the LakeRim GIS website. The website has a new interface and can be linked to through the Indiana Geological Survey’s Home page: http://igs.indiana.edu/ The following shapefiles and metadata for Northwest Indiana have been submitted to the IGS and will be available on the website in the near future: airports (HAZUS ’99), cemeteries, churches (USGS GNIS database), place point locations, railroads (NTAD 2002), roads, urban areas (TIGER/Line 2000).

Meeting notes will be posted to the NWI GIS Forum website as quickly as possible after we meet.

Other Business
.Next Meeting – Thursday, March 13, at 9:00 a.m. – Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission.