2009 Ohio GIS Conference
Presentation Abstract and Biography

Hybrid GeoSpatial Stack: Combining Open Source & ESRI Technologies for Park Planning and Management

Stephen Mather, Cleveland Metroparks

Stephen Mather was originally trained in GIS at the College of the Atlantic, where he received his bachelors of Human Ecology in 1999. He went on for an M.A. in Geography and Planning at the University of Toledo, managing the department's GIS and Applied Geographics Lab when it first opened, as well as the GIS lab at the Lake Erie Research Center.
After spending a short time in the public sector, Stephen worked for 2 1/2 years as a Research Associate in the Remote Sensing Lab at Byrd Polar Research Center as part of the Radarsat Antarctic Mapping Project (RAMP) and later the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS). The RAMP project included generating high resolution mosaics of the Antarctic Ice, and mapping ice stream velocity using repeat imagery.
Starting in January 2008, Stephen moved to Cleveland to be the GIS Manager at Cleveland Metroparks. Cleveland Metroparks has been working in earnest to put together a framework for integrating operational decision making, natural resource management, comprehensive park planning, supported by GIS. The primary objective from a GIS perspective has been consolidating a database of the best available existing datasets and extending datasets where possible for identifying valuable natural resources, using analysis to map and predict quality habitats across Cleveland Metroparks holdings, and beyond to the contributing watersheds and habitat areas.

Thursday, September 17, 2009 - 4:05 PM - Track 2

In 2008, Cleveland Metroparks GIS office, housed in the Planning Division of the park system, began an initiative to rebuild its GIS system. The rebuild has been implemented systematically at all levels, from datasets and data storage to map delivery systems. The aim is to provide a mapping, analysis, and data collection framework to aid decision-making at all levels within the park system, and to do so efficiently with respect to software costs and staff time. In order to control costs, a hybrid Open Source/ESRI software stack has been implemented, in which Open Source software is used for the spatial database, map server, and thin client GIS, while ESRI's ArcGIS desktop continues to be used for most analysis and paper map production. Over the next year, the system will be rolled out for use in the wider park system, high quality print functionality will be added to the thin client GIS, and the quality and number of datasets and maps available to users will increase.