Data Consortium Newsletter     

July 20, 2015 

In this Issue
The Data Consortium consists of DRCOG members and regional partners with an interest in geospatial data and collaboration. The Data Consortium Newsletter is designed to improve communication among local GIS professionals and features updates from all levels of government as they relate to data and geospatial initiatives in our region. This newsletter is published quarterly.
Urban Growth Boundary/Area Updates
Article submitted by Andy Taylor, AICP, Senior Planner at DRCOG. Andy can be reached at [email protected] or 303-480-5636


Since the adoption of Metro Vision 2020 in 1997, the Urban Growth Boundary/Area, or UGB/A, has tracked the region's growth and development. The UGB/A reflects a bottom-up approach to growth management that relies heavily on voluntary collaboration among communities.

The UGB/A includes areas that are 1) currently urban, or 2) anticipated by local communities to be urban in the future. DRCOG relies on local data and input to identify both.


To identify what is currently urban, local data is run through DRCOG Board-adopted mapping rules. DRCOG staff are looking for local GIS staff and planners who are willing to provide feedback on this process later this year. Please contact Jenny Todd ([email protected]) if you would like to participate.


Identifying areas for future urban development is the domain of our local governments. Local governments request UGB/A from the DRCOG Board to cover these areas based on local knowledge and plans. The Board has deferred discussions of UGB/A while it attends to updates to the Metro Vision plan. Based on the anticipated schedule for adopting Metro Vision, DRCOG staff believes communities would be invited to submit requests for UGB/A late in 2015 or the first quarter of 2016.


Much has changed at the local level since the last cycle of UGB/A requests in 2009. Feel free to contact Andy Taylor ([email protected]) with any questions or comments.  Over the next few months DRCOG staff will be reaching out to local communities to learn more about their experiences managing their UGB/A. Please be on the lookout for opportunities to provide feedback.

DRAPP 2016 Planning is Underway

Article provided by Ashley Summers, Information Systems Manager, DRCOG.  Ashley can be reached at 303-480-6746 or [email protected].

Every two years, DRCOG facilitates the Denver Regional Aerial Photography Project to acquire high-resolution imagery for the entire Denver region. Planning is currently underway for the 2016 project.  In March, DRCOG released an RFP for Aerial Imagery Acquisition and Processing. The vendor bids were evaluated, and the top four vendors were interviewed by the selection committee. The committee is made up of partners that volunteered to be part of this critical process and includes representatives from Commerce City, Douglas County, Denver Water, Weld County, Lone Tree, Greenwood Village, Westminster, Denver, Arapahoe County, Wheat Ridge, Castle Rock, Adams County, and Jefferson County. All potential partners have been asked to participate in the planning process by filling out a requirements survey for the 2016 product. Results show that the product in 2016 needs to be similar to previous products, so we will be contracting for 4-band orthoimagery at 3-inch, 6-inch, and 1-foot resolutions. 

Our next step is to release an RFP for an independent quality control vendor. This is necessary to make sure that every tile across our 7,000 square mile region is checked and approved.

In the fall of 2015, DRCOG will begin officially signing up partners for the 2016 project. If you are interested in participating, please contact Ashley Summers at [email protected]

Sneak Peek at Planimetrics Data!

Article provided by Ashley Summers, Information Systems Manager, DRCOG.  Ashley can be reached at 303-480-6746 or [email protected].

The Denver Regional Planimetrics Project is starting to produce data! A 25 square-mile pilot has already been delivered and QAQC'ed by regional partners. The vendor is scheduled to deliver a 70 square-mile area at the end of July. This data includes building footprints, edge of pavement, parking lots, trails and sidewalks. All data will be public domain and made available for download from DRCOG's Regional Data Catalog as it is completed. Please see attached for the delivery map.





Using InfoGroup Data at the City and County of Denver

Article submitted by Doug Genzer, GISP, GIS Data Administrator at the City and County of Denver. Doug can be reached at [email protected] or 720-913-4839. 

The City and County of Denver has used Infogroup data since 2012 and will be participating in DRCOG's regional funding of the data for 2016.  The data are used by various agencies including; Office of Economic Development, Community Planning and Development, Office of Emergency Management, and Technology Services GIS.

The data has been processed into a GIS layer, and is used mostly as general reference layers for businesses data.  The data has both NAICS and PRMSIC codes, with text descriptions for each, which allows for specific categories of businesses to be queried out.

Some examples of how the City has used the data: 

  • Mapping places of worship for the Gang Taskforce
  • Mapping drug and alcohol treatment facilities for marijuana analysis
  • As a source of daytime and nighttime employment data for emergency management
  • Identify employment centers (density of number of employees and number of businesses)
  • Targeting for business outreach for retention, expansion and attraction efforts
  • Supplement information about the local business environment for the Office of Economic Development's Strategic Lending group
  • Understand neighborhood dynamics including business types and sizes
  • Analyze locations of employment density in relation to transit
  • Identify geographic clusters of businesses in a certain industry group

The data does have its limitations, which includes some data being geocoded to parcel centroids, completeness, and the fact that the data is a snapshot in time.  Despite these caveats, the data allows the organization to hit the ground


New Douglas County, CO GIS Open Data Site
Article provided by Joel Hanson, GIS Services Manager, Douglas County. Contact him at  303-663-6285 or [email protected]

The Douglas County GIS Services Team is happy to announce our new GIS Open Data site for your use:  access the site from the following link:

The new Douglas County GIS Open Data site replaces our old "Data Disk" and was built using our ArcGIS Server and ArcGIS Online infrastructure with hope of aiding the community of GIS professionals.  The ArcGIS REST services that feed this site are updated on a monthly basis, and you can link to other sites within Douglas County (and beyond) to retrieve non-spatial data from our Assessor's Office, Clerk and Recorder, Department of Community Development, NOAA, and more.  As this site is hosted on ArcGIS Online, we have enabled some "beta" functionality to see how the site performs in providing abilities to preview and analyze the GIS data sets before you decide to download as a spreadsheet, KML, SHP, GeoJSON feed, zipped fGDBs, zipped SHPs, or link directly to the data in your ArcGIS Online web map.  Also, the entire site can become a JSON-GeoJSON feed if you are willing to search the web on how to do that.

So, if any of you are looking for free GIS data for purposes of your work, play, or academics I invite you to check out this site to gather data that can assist your needs.  We no longer require signed data agreements for the standard GIS data provided on this site.  If you are interested in custom data, hourly rates  will apply to that request.  Custom data requests can be made via instructions and documents that you can find on our home page:

In closing, I invite you to feel free to check out this site and explore our GIS data offerings.  If you have comments or questions, feel free to contact us via the link provided at the bottom of the Douglas County GIS Open Data homepage.


GIS Coordination Efforts at OIT

Article provided by Jon Gottsegen, State GIS Coordinator. Jon can be reached at [email protected] or 303-764-7712.

The State of Colorado is furthering GIS coordination through funding of additional coordination staff and operations. This support was motivated, in part, by the need to coordinate data after the September 2013 floods.  One immediate action by the Office of Information Technology's (OIT) GIS Coordination and Development Program to act on this support was a GIS Data Coordination Summit held in May.

he Summit, held at the Colorado History Center, was attended by approximately 80 participants from local, regional, state and federal agencies, including DRCOG and several of DRCOG's member jurisdictions. The purpose was to provide actionable feedback regarding the objectives and specific data on which state GIS coordination should focus. The attendees helped to identify the lines of business that deserve the most attention in relation to geographic data and the most critical data sets for those lines of business. The top five lines of business according to the participants were emergency management, transportation, law enforcement, economic development and information technology. Natural resource management, specifically water, was close to this top five as well. The critical data sets included roads, addresses, parcels, high resolution imagery, statewide imagery (i.e., National Agricultural Imagery Program (NAIP)), and railroads. From this input OIT has developed a tactical plan for coordination over this fiscal year.

Your Article Goes HERE!

The Data Consortium Newsletter is facilitated by DRCOG but is designed to be written by GIS professionals like you. This quarterly newsletter reaches 200 people and has a higher than average "open rate." It's the perfect place to show off your projects, highlight your great work, and contribute ideas to the GIS community in the Denver Region.


The next newsletter goes out in October. Please contact Ashley Summers at 303-480-6746 or [email protected] by September to contribute.

New Data in the Regional Data Catalog


Also, check out our updated TIP Webmap:


Contact Us
For more information on any of the topics mentioned in this newsletter or if you have an idea for an article, please contact DRCOG Information Systems Manager Ashley Summers at 303-480-6746 or [email protected]
Disclaimer: The information provided in this newsletter is compiled from multiple sources and is intended for informational purposes only.  DRCOG assumes no responsibility or legal liability for the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any information in this newsletter.