Fall 2007

The Newsletter of the Minnesota GIS/LIS Consortium

Table of Contents

MN GIS/LIS Consortium

2007 Conference
Silent Auction
From the Chair
Polaris Awards
Student Scholarship Competition
Our 50th Issue

LMIC Budget Restored
Parcel Inventory Updated
Monument Coordinates in Feet

Governor's Council
New Members
Annual Report
Regional Collaboration Panel

Met Council Map Site
MetroGIS Address Dataset

New Funding for Land Data
GeoMoose Web Mapping
Hennepin Co. Mobile Assessor Tool
Remote Aircraft Photography
Clay Co. Addresses

USGS Maps in GeoPDF
Free Landsat Images
TerraLook Free Imagery
NOAA Satellites
USGS Resources for Teachers

Higher Education
St. Mary's Update

K-12 Education
Geography, History Online

ESRI Map Help

Google Earth Pro Grants

Other Places
Bring Back Geography!
New Parcel Study
MAPPS Loses Lawsuit


Updated Statewide Parcel Map Inventory Online

By Jay Krafthefer, Mn/DOT and Norman Anderson, Land Management Information Center


The Statewide Parcel Map Inventory (SPMI), originally conducted and published by the Minnesota Department of Transportation in 2003, has been updated for June 2007 – results are available through an online mapping and reporting tool developed at the Land Management Information Center (LMIC): This project collected updated information about Minnesota’s efforts to develop digital parcel data and mapping capabilities. It was funded by Mn/DOT’s Office of Land Management and conducted by LMIC.


Survey Procedure

Results from previous inventories (2003, 2004) were used to populate the 2007 online survey instrument developed and hosted by LMIC. Previous respondents were then asked to visit the online survey and update information about their organization. In addition to the state’s 87 counties, 6 cities, 11 tribal governments and both the Chippewa and Superior National Forests have now contributed to the inventory. The survey asked questions regarding each organization’s development of digital parcel data and characteristics of those data. Specific questions were asked about data accuracy, availability and attributes. Contact information for each organization was collected as well.


Site Enhancements

Updated results are served via a Mapserver application developed by LMIC in 2004 and enhanced for 2007. Custom maps and reports can be generated from the site. Full text reports for each respondent are also available. Users can easily define which unit of government, survey questions or area of the state they are interested in querying. Beginning in 2007, organizations can easily update their data on an on-going basis through a suite of new administrative tools LMIC has added to the application.



This updated survey found a slight increase in the number of organizations creating digital parcel data, but perhaps more significantly, found a larger increase in the total percentage of digital parcel data coverage within many local units of government. There was a 41.3% increase between 2004 and 2007 in the number of counties which have completed more than 75% of their digital parcel data.



This survey is important to Mn/DOT when conducting road right-of-way studies for local transportation initiatives and is also important to many others. Organizations still developing digital parcel data can better understand how their colleagues are managing their data. Local units of government can learn about their neighbors’ development. Eventually, this inventory may lead to uniformity in practice and reduction in data duplication by sharing information about governmental parcel development efforts.


Feedback Welcomed

We look forward to review and comment by the Minnesota GIS community and hope that this inventory will be useful across the state. Please visit the SPMI 2007 site at: and let us know what you think! Results from previous inventories are still accessible. Also, a session is being planned on the process and findings of the new inventory at the MN GIS/LIS Conference in October 2007.


For more information, contact Jay Krafthefer at or 651-366-3463, or Norman Anderson at or 651-201-2483.