Virginia Commonwealth University
Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program GIS Support
Project Description as Proposed:
This task supports one full time staff position (Coastal GIS Coordinator) that is contracted through Virginia Commonwealth University’s Center for Environmental Studies (VCU CES) and the partial time of two additional VCU CES staff required to host and maintain the Coastal Geospatial and Educational Mapping System (Coastal GEMS), perform data/software updates, and perform grant/project management. Coastal Management GIS Support:
The Coastal GIS Coordinator provides support to the Virginia CZM Program to ensure that GIS needs are met; that policy and planning functions have adequate GIS support; and that open grants involving GIS products are properly managed and implemented. This staff position will support the following activities: Work with VCU CES and others to ensure the maintenance and enhancement of Virginia CZM’s Coastal GEMSCommunicate with Coastal Policy Team and other ad-hoc advisors to identify coastal geospatial data needs Organize Coastal GEMS training programs for state/local government users and others as requestedAdvise CZM project managers on grants involving GIS data development and mapping Produce GIS map products as needed by the CZM Program and partnersParticipate in the Virginia State GIS Users’ Group and keep up-to-date on, or become involved in, other GIS-related developments in VirginiaWork with contractors and Mid-Atlantic states to help develop and maintain a MARCO GIS Portal (FY 2010 Task 93.01) Coastal GEMS Maintenance:
VCU CES will continue to host, maintain, and update the Coastal GEMS web mapping application. Current Coastal GEMS data layers will be edited or updated as determined by VCU/CZM staff. New Coastal Gems data layers will be added as they are developed through Virginia CZM Program grants or are contributed from a partnering agency or organization.
Nick Meade, 804-698-4297; Nick.Meade@deq.virginia.gov or Laura McKay, 804.698-4323; Laura.McKay@deq.virginia.gov
10/1/10 - 9/30/11
Final Product Received:
Coastal Management GIS Support & Coastal GEMS Maintenance: FY 10 Annual Report (pdf)
Project Summary Provided by Grantee:
- Virginia Commonwealth University’s Center for Environmental Studies (VCU CES) continued to host the Coastal GEMS online mapping application through the FY10 grant period, and VCU CES staff performed routine maintenance and updates on Coastal GEMS during this time. Tasks were to refresh map services, to update data and cartography in the map file as per CZM staff request, and to install software and security upgrades. Coastal Gems remained operational throughout the FY10 grant period and was only offline to install software/security updates or to refresh map services.
- During the FY10 grant period, at CZM staff request, VCU CES staff updated the data and symbology on two currently in production GEMS layers and added four new data layers to the application. The Coastal GIS Coordinator processed GIS data layers for effective display on Coastal GEMS and uploaded layers to VCU to be added to Coastal GEMS. GEMS fact sheets were added/updated where applicable. Layers updated in this period include Healthy Waters and Conservation Lands and layers added include Coastal Virginia Ecological Value Assessment (VEVA), Coastal Avian Protection Zones (CAPZ), Publically Accessible Conserved Lands, and Healthy Watersheds.
- Google Analytics services for Coastal GEMS set up by VCU CES staff remained operational throughout the FY10 grant period. Google Analytics sends an email PDF report to CZM staff weekly to show access and web statistics for the Gems application and VCU CES staff created additional reports at CZM staff request by querying specific date ranges. From October 1, 2010 to September 30, 2011, Coastal GEMS received 1,429 visits from 743 unique visitors resulting in 1,969 pageviews and an average site visit time of 2 minutes and 19 seconds.
- The Coastal GIS Coordinator conducted two formal Coastal GEMS trainings during the FY10 grant period; One as requested by the Richmond Regional PDC presented to local planners during their Environmental TAC meeting and a joint training with DEQ Environmental Education staff given at VA DEQ’s central office computer lab facility marketed towards master naturalists and other adult educators. Both presentations/live demos were customized for the audience. The Coastal GIS Coordinator also provided slides to and advised DEQ Environmental Education staff who gave a presentation at the 2010 VA Council for Social Studies Conference outlining GEMS as a useful tool for educators to help address curriculum needs for advanced placement high school geography classes.
- The Coastal GIS Coordinator worked to create GIS data and map products for CZM partners as requested including:
Working with VMRC Conservation and Replenishment staff to create maps for regulatory use, creating a map for the VA CZM funded joint VIMS/VMRC FY2009 & 2011 Eelgrass Seeding & Bay Scallop Release project for use in federal and state application documents, creating a representative map of Eastern Shore seaside avian distribution data, and working with the Eastern Shore Keeper to develop spatial data and maps of recreational use on the seaside of the Eastern Shore. The Coastal GIS Coordinator worked with the Coastal VEVA workgroup to create and finalize a visually appealing map symbology that best represented the Coastal VEVA dataset. The Coastal GIS Coordinator created several map layouts of the Coastal VEVA dataset, including handouts as well as large scale maps. The GIS Coordinator worked with members of the Southern Tip Partnership to create an updated map of lands conserved on the Southern Tip as well as a map attached to a press release regarding a recent land acquisition.
- The Coastal GIS Coordinator produced coastal resource maps and made GIS based calculations as needed for CZM staff to utilize in meetings, presentations, and publications. The GIS Coordinator identified locations of and then created point shapefiles for VA CZM public access, land conservation, and habitat restoration sites. These shapefiles were then used by the GIS Coordinator to create “dot distribution” style map layouts for the VA CZM 25th anniversary edition magazine. The Coastal GIS Coordinator updated over a dozen maps in the Virginia CELCP plan to utilize the new Coastal VEVA dataset (which was an update to the PCA dataset previously used in these maps).
Disclaimer: This project summary provides the federal dollars initially awarded to the grantee. Due to underexpenditure or reprogramming of grant funds, this figure may change. For more information on the allocation of coastal grant funds, please contact Laura McKay, Virginia Coastal Program Manager, at 804.698.4323 or email: Laura.McKay@deq.virginia.gov
A more detailed Scope of Work for this project is available. Please direct your request for a copy to Virginia.Witmer@deq.virginia.gov