Transformation of spatial data to a new zone system: a survey of US metropolitan planning organizations

This study reports on a survey of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) in the USA to collect information about spatial data transformation, a geographic procedure used to convert data from one set of zones (system A) to a different set of zones (system B), where systems A and B have incompatible zone boundaries. The survey reveals that 60% of MPOs perform spatial data transformation more than once per year, usually using the simplest, most error-prone methods. Given a lag in application of new GIS techniques among planners, it is perhaps not surprising that practising planners tend to favor simpler methods of spatial data transformation, despite the widely documented shortcomings of such techniques in the literature. These findings suggest that the gap between research and application in the utilization of GIS in planning practice will require both more advanced training of planners using GIS, and, perhaps more importantly, greater sophistication among the consumers of GIS planning analyses—non-GIS planners, public officials, and the general public.(A)


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  • Accession Number: 01060896
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport Research Laboratory
  • Files: ITRD
  • Created Date: Sep 10 2007 1:26PM