GIS day

The Power of Mapping

A geographic information system (GIS) lets us visualise, question, analyse, and interpret data to understand relationships, patterns, and trends. GIS benefits organisations of all sizes and in almost every industry.

13 November 2019

Data visualisation

GIS is the go-to technology for making better decisions about location. Making correct decisions about location is critical to the success of an organisation. GIS can take a spreadsheet containing geographical data (addresses, coordinates) and visualise it spatially on a map.

Spatial data collection

There are many ways of collecting spatial data from a user. An address is the easiest, but sometimes an exact location is better. An interactive map can be used to collect the exact coordinate of the issue allowing, in this case, the precise location to be identified.

Cost savings from greater efficiency

GIS is widely used to optimise maintenance schedules and daily fleet movements. Typical implementations can result in a savings of 10 to 30 per cent in operational expenses, through reduction in fuel use and staff time, improved customer service, and more efficient scheduling.

Interactive maps

A web map is an interactive display of geographic information that you can use to tell stories and answer questions. For example, this map replaced a series of PDFs containing route information, with a more visual approach to finding the mobile library.

Data connectivity

We are increasingly storing data spatially and GIS allows this data to be connected and displayed. This example shows how a desktop GIS can be connected to a database and a webpage map or table. The webpage is updated automatically when the user enters the information into the database, with no need to contact the web team to update the webpage.

3D visualisations

We live in a 3D world and many spatial questions can only be answered in 3D. GIS can be used to answer these questions and display the results in an easy to understand way. A typical example of the use of 3D GIS technology is in the production of flooding models.

Maps Online

Maps Online is the councils internal web GIS. It can be used to visualise, interrogate and analyse data in a user-friendly way. It has security for confidential data and performs many of the functions of a desktop GIS program. Contact the GIS team for more information about Maps Online.

Unique Property Reference Number

The Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN) is the unique identifier for every addressable location in Great Britain. It is created by local authorities who have the statutory authority to name and number every street and property, and by Ordnance Survey who identify objects on the landscape which may otherwise not attract an address. It provides a comprehensive, complete and consistent identifier throughout a property's life cycle and enables data to be connected (see example).

Spatial analysis

GIS is an integral part of North Lincolnshire's Local Plan which is the heart of the planning system. GIS has been used for the public to submit sites for the first time, used to evaluate sites against spatial criteria and collate all the information together.

Team and project collaboration

A map is a great way to present data but it can also be used to collaberate and record work. This map was designed for the Isle of Axholme & Hatfield Chase Landscape Parnership. It allows volunteers and experts to collect and record their finds whilst still allowing the project owners control of what gets displayed on the website. It also allows the general public to keep up-to-date with finds and events.

Spatial document searching

GIS gives the opportunity to search for documents spatially. If documents have a spatial element to them like planning applications, tree preservation orders or S106s, then searching for documents using a map can be a lot easier than trying to find files in a folder structure. This example is a search tool for finding all planning documents which previously would require searching a large and slow folder system. This example can also be linked from Maps Online to allow a spatial search of documents.

Virtual tours

Virtual tours can give customers an interactive opportunity to explore spaces, either to familiarise themselves with a destination, or just to gain knowledge. As well as a visual experience, data can be added to give key information or instructions.


For more information please contact gissupport@northlincs.gov.uk
First Floor, Church Square House