King County’s marine research vessel, the SoundGuardian, spends much of its time on Puget Sound monitoring water quality, collecting samples to check on marine health, and maintaining marine buoys. Recently though, it went on its latest mission as part of a multi-year project to survey the King County saltwater shorelines and I was aboard.
Sixty-five miles north of the King County GIS Center there is another highly effective county-based GIS operation. Skagit County Geographic Information Services (SCGIS), located in beautiful Mount Vernon, was recently featured in the March/April issue of Insight magazine, a publication of Professional & Technical Employees Local 17. The article looks into the history and growth of SCGIS and the current makeup of its ten-member team.
Gerrymandering, the process of manipulating political district boundaries for some advantage, is a broadly recognized but poorly understood process. This topic was first discussed here in GIS & You by Dennis Higgins in a September 2017 article. Now, Mark Salling, Ph.D., GISP, Senior Fellow and Research Associate at the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University, has written an informative article for the GIS Professional, the bimonthly newsletter of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association.
Perhaps, like me, you remember the term “gerrymander” from history class. A gerrymandered electoral district is one whose boundaries are defined—often with unusually shaped geographic extents—to intentionally favor one political party over another. While the term sounds silly, gerrymanders are serious business that can and do affect every aspect of our society.
King County continues its commitment to making GIS data available to the public. This post introduces the release of the new King County GIS Open Data site. Our new site is hosted on Esri’s ArcGIS Online Open Data platform and initially provides access to more than 100 datasets, in fifteen thematic categories, for inspection, analysis, and download.