Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Transportation For The Nation - TFTN

Last week at the GIS for Transportation symposium - GIS-T - in Charleston, WV the strategic planning effort for TFTN was initiated. The GIS-T symposium is a gathering of mostly state and federal DOT officials that provided an opportunity to obtain the input of this stakeholder group. Throughout the year the TFTN strategic planning team will be soliciting input from various stakeholder groups from across the nation. The idea for TFTN was started by the National States Geographic Information Council - NSGIC - and was born out of the same notion of Imagery For The Nation. Essentially, these data are being collected multiple time by many different parties for various purposes. Why not collaborate so that we can collect transportation data once and use it many times? Makes too much sense. The challenge is of course in the collaboration of all the diverse business needs.

TFTN is important to Virginia GIS because it follows what we already have established, a "Transportation for Virginia" if you will, through the Virginia Road Centerline efforts. Thanks to data sourced from local governments who provide updated local transportation data to VGIN, who then combines the data statewide and includes VDOT data, Virginia has the most complete and comprehensive road network available in Virginia. These data are then leveraged with federal and private collaborators. An example of how the US Census is using Virginia RCL for the 2010 Census was demonstrated by this presentation from the US Census in slides 14-20.

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