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You are viewing a static copy of the 2009 Sunriver Conference website archived on December 11, 2013. To view current Northwest GIS User Group events and news, visit

Session: Natural Resources, Environmental Science & Conservation

Chris Beaudette - Windsor Solutions

The Exchange Network is a partnership among states, tribes, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that is revolutionizing the exchange of environmental information. Partners on the Exchange Network share data efficiently and securely over the Internet. The objective of the Biodiversity Data Exchange project is to increase the effectiveness of the New York State Natural Heritage Program (NYNHP), which has the responsibility for collecting, managing, and disseminating information about rare plants, rare animals, and significant ecological communities. The NYNHP shares this information with NatureServe, a nonprofit organization that connects more than 50 Natural Heritage Programs across the country. NatureServe establishes scientific standards for biological inventory and biodiversity data management, develops comprehensive and current databases for at-risk species and ecological communities, and provides information products and conservation services to guide natural resource decision-making.

The New York Department of Environmental Conservation has a critical business need to make natural resource data more readily available and accessible to the public and to partners, particularly online. Windsor Solutions developed and implemented a Web-based application using the ArcGIS JavaScript API to provide enhanced access to this natural resource data.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009 - 10:34
Charlie Schrader-Patton

Each year, many millions of dollars are spent in suppressing wildland fires. What is the return on these expenditures? How can we best prioritize dollars spent fighting fires and in fuel reduction projects? The Office of Management and Budget (OMB), General Accounting Office (GAO) and Congress have asked these questions. In response, Wildland Fire Leadership Council (WFLC) has assembled a team of fire researchers and GIS analysts to develop a model to approximate fire risk to highly valued resources - social, economic, and ecological. The model uses outputs from the Fire Program Analysis (FPA) System to estimate burn probability and flame length, and layers of highly valued resources such as power lines, wildlife habitat, and watersheds. The first approximation of the model will be published in a Forest Service General Technical Report (GTR, in review).

Monday, September 21, 2009 - 10:35

Session: Poster

Annamarie Tiniakos

The City of Springfield designed this jam packed map to provide the community and potential developers with as much vital City information as possible in one map. The challenge brought to our GIS department was the need to see about 10 maps on 1 map without losing clarity, information and to maintain feature simplicity and balance. Although the battle was in the details, this cartographic design included elements of generalization, simplification, abstraction, hierarchy and ground relationship, colour and contrast.
The final map product was successful in bringing all City data together with equal importance and straightforwardness giving a large audience an easy to read, robust map of our City.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009 - 09:18
Bob DenOuden

Every ten years, since 1790, the United States has conducted a census of its population. Next year, on April 1, 2010, the United States Census Bureau will conduct its 2010 decennial census. Preparation for this effort began long ago with a focus on enhancing partnerships with state and local agencies. Many of these partnership efforts have involved an increase in the use of locally provided GIS data. Lane Council of Governments has been involved in a number of Census programs aimed at utilizing local data and expertise in order to improve Census 2010 results. This poster will describe those programs as well as give examples of how Census data are used at LCOG.

Monday, September 21, 2009 - 14:24
Morgan Omdal - Tetra Tech

Mitigating Stranding and Trapping Effects on Fish Species During Hydroelectric Operations
Seattle City Light (SCL) is relicensing the operations of the Boundary Hydroelectric Project (Project) on the Pend Oreille River. The Pend Orielle River is located in Northeast Washington and is home to varied and important fish resources. These resources can be negatively affected by receding water levels either from Project operations or from natural reductions of inflow. When these conditions exist, fish may become stranded in shallow sloping shoreline areas (< 4%) or isolated in pools that become disconnected from the mainstem flow.
SCL is funding a study which was designed to develop an index model of relative stranding and trapping effects based on various scenarios of project operations and natural flow patterns.
This poster demonstrates the geoprocessing tools and methods used to identify potential stranding and trapping areas. The areas were periodically examined in the field during water drawdown events to measure actual fish stranding or trapping. Site-specific information, such as substrate and presence of macrophytes (aquatic plants), was also noted. A hydraulic routing model, which was developed separately, was used to determine when areas would be dewatered and the duration of trapping at specific pools. Applying assigned multiplication factors to the analysis, along with the hydraulic routing model, produced the stranding and trapping indices for each scenario. These resulting indices were then available for management personnel and interest groups to examine and compare the relative effect of various operation scenarios on fish stranding and trapping.

Friday, September 18, 2009 - 12:35

Session: Collaborative Efforts in Natural Resources

Charlie Schrader-Patton and Alan Ager

Forests and rangelands of the western United States are vulnerable to environmental stresses and disturbances such as fire, insect infestation, disease, invasive species, drought, and development. These stresses can have significant and long-lasting effects on ecological and socioeconomic values. Land managers need state-of-the-art information and tools that help them anticipate and solve problems. Many geospatial datasets describing these threats to wildlands have been created; what is lacking is comprehensive viewing application displaying and summarizing these threats and their spatial co-occurrence with highly valued resources. This presentation will describe a cooperative effort by the Western Wildlands Environmental Threat Assessment Center (WWETAC) and the Remote Sensing Applications Center to develop a Threat Mapper that will serve as a decision support tool for land managers.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009 - 10:31

Session: GIS Implementation & Management

Kirsty Burt (Kirsty Burt GIS) – Moderator; Scot McQueen (ESRI); Ian Von Essen (GIS Manager, Spokane County); Dean Anderson (IT Director, Polk County)

How do we continue to build and manage a successful enterprise GIS in tough economic times? How can we leverage existing organizational initiatives for project dollars? How can I add capacity with a hiring freeze? This session will include real world strategies and solutions presented by some of the most experienced GIS managers and consultants in the Northwest. A solid enterprise approach to GIS combines the software, architecture, management, and planning that is required to integrate GIS fully into the organization’s business. This approach is always important to GIS implementation and management; however, it is critical in times where competition for budget dollars is very tight.

Our speakers lead and support efforts in organizations where GIS is thriving. Each will present a different aspect of their successful approach to enterprise GIS in the current economy, including insights into technology, funding, project planning, coordination, and executive support. The session will conclude with a lively discussion among our speakers and the audience.

Friday, September 18, 2009 - 19:51

Session: Collaborative Efforts

See the Panel below


The Bob, Bob, Bob & Dean Show – The Secrets of Collaboration Revealed
Moderator, Bob Haas, Deschutes County
This session will provide an opportunity to learn about three very successful projects that have involved a high level of collaboration. In addition to providing information about the projects, the presenters will share their insights into what made these collaborative projects successful as well as offering advice on what situations to avoid. The session will also encourage attendees to share their success stories and the keys to their success. The session will be in a panel format and as the title suggests, we hope to make it entertaining.  


Friday, September 18, 2009 - 16:34

Session: Mobile GIS for the Enterprise

Craig Greenwald

Managing mobile users and data in an enterprise GIS environment presents many challenges.  Files must be processed and organized, field edits must be checked for quality, and everyone in the organization always needs to have the most current and accurate data. Effective use of techniques like user logins, automatic tracking fields, and ArcGIS Geodatabase versioning, combined with well designed workflows, can help keep the best possible data flowing through an organization.  This session will show you how to manage base and operational data, design efficient mobile maps and workflows, and effectively exchange GIS data with all your field users.

Friday, September 18, 2009 - 16:19

Session: ESRI ArcGIS Server API Comparison

Dennis Scofield (ODOT), Loren Mueller (CH2M Hill)

Working in cooperation with CH2M HILL the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has created a suite of web-based GIS tools to view, integrate and distribute roadway asset information to agency employees across the state. Access to asset data is a crucial requirement in the process of scoping potential construction projects and performing many other tasks that ODOT employees complete on a daily basis. The users of the application will range from project managers and planners to maintenance field crews and engineers. They all need the most up-to-date information regarding the highway network and its associated assets to perform their duties.

The ODOT FACS-STIP scoping tools created provide a single point of access allowing users statewide to interact with and reference this data. ODOT roadway assets range from signs and guardrails to culverts and sidewalks, as well as the State Highway network itself. To enhance the distribution of this critical information ODOT chose to leverage its existing GIS investment by creating new web-based tools which allow users to interact with and explore the available asset data utilizing an easy to navigation map interface. This tool consists of interactive maps that deliver a high level of control over map navigation and data display. The map itself has gone beyond the traditional display-only mode to allow users to interact with it as a bulletin board, sharing information with one another. The tools also provide comprehensive asset reporting, allowing users to generate reports for asset groups based on a location of interest, eliminating the need to sift through irrelevant information.

The creation of these tools is allowing ODOT to do ‘more with less’ by:

> Investing in the future. By spending the money now on advanced tools for sharing asset information to its users, ODOT is spending less down the road by streamlining work processes and eliminating redundancy.

> Creating modular software. The new software tools may be easily customized by ODOT developers, and the current application may be leveraged in whole or in part by other tools in the future.

> Reducing server processing and meeting performance specifications. The architecture chosen for the development of the tools utilizes the JavaScript API for ESRI’s ArcGIS Server, splitting more of the processing load between server and client, and reducing the need to upgrade hardware.

Friday, September 25, 2009 - 16:19