Thursday, May 23, 2013

North Dakota GIS Hub Data is in!

Data that resides on the GIS Hub have been searchable for well over a decade utilizing the descriptive information that is associated with each of those datasets.  These days, this descriptive information is found in the Hub Data Portal. The purpose of the Hub Data Portal is to make it possible to locate data that can then be downloaded and/or streamed via web services from the GIS Hub. 

This descriptive information, termed metadata, has been harvested by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in one form or the other for many years. A key benefit of the harvesting is that other other organizations and users searching for data can more easily discover local, regional, and state data sources. Harvesting organizes this descriptive information and simply points back to the originating sources.

Originally, this harvested information resided in the USGS "Geospatial One-Stop" which eventually morphed into  Very recently, has merged into

Spend some time in it and you'll soon find that in there is a treasure trove of data, both spatial and non-spatial. If you want to do a quick search for North Dakota data you have several options once you click on the Data menu item:
  • Use the map to draw a rectangle around the state
  • Type in North Dakota in the Enter Location field 
  • Enter a search term in the Search Datasets field (e.g., North Dakota water) 
  • Use the search filters on the left (e.g., click State Government under Organization Types, then select State of North Dakota under Organizations).

There are additional data sets referenced in the Hub Data Portal that are not yet in  This is because the metadata for those datasets have to be validated and modified before they can be harvested by This is to ensure that the search and browse tools within properly work.  As time allows, the remaining metadata records will be validated and modified so that all Hub Data Portal information will be found in

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Updated and New Datasets on the GIS Hub

Several datasets have been updated and one new one has been added to the GIS Hub by the North Dakota GIS Technical Committee data stewards.  These are:
  • Imagery Basemap (this web-service has been updated to now include 2012 NAIP and local areas; data courtesy of City of Wahpeton, City of Grand Forks, Cities of Bismarck & Mandan, City of Fargo, Cass County, Ward County, Army Corps of Engineers, State Water Commission, U.S. Department of Agriculture)
  • Watershed Boundary Dataset (new, includes watersheds, sub-watersheds, regions, sub-regions, basins, and sub-basins; data courtesy of Department of Health)
  • City Boundaries (updated, courtesy of Department of Transportation)
  • NDDOT Landmarks (updated, courtesy of Department of Transportation)
These datasets can be downloaded or delivered via data services.  More information on these datasets can be found on the Hub Data Portal. You may find it convenient to simply browse to the data within the Categories section of the Hub Data Portal. After you've located the data of interest, click on the More Information button and then scroll down to the Transfer Options section. In that section, click the Download link to download the data or click one of the other links such as the 'Esri REST including WMS' link to obtain the data service information.