GIS Applications to City Planning Engineering

GIS Applications to City Planning Engineering

Balqies Sadoun (Al-Balqa’ Applied University, Jordan)
Copyright: © 2006 |Pages: 8
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-562-7.ch037
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Abstract

The rapid progress in information technology (IT) has moved computing and the Internet to the mainstream. Today’s personal laptop computer has computational power and performance equal to 10 times that of the mainframe computer. Information technology has become essential to numerous fields, including city and regional planning engineering. Moreover, IT and computing are no longer exclusive to computer scientists/engineers. There are many new disciplines that have been initiated recently based on the cross fertilization of IT and traditional fields. Examples include geographical information systems (GIS), computer simulation, e-commerce, and e-business. The arrival of affordable and powerful computer systems over the past few decades has facilitated the growth of pioneering software applications for the storage, analysis, and display of geographic data and information. The majority of these belong to GIS (Batty et al., 1994; Burrough et al., 1980; Choi & Usery, 2004; Clapp et al., 1997; GIS@Purdue, 2003; Golay et al., 2000; Goodchild et al., 1999; IFFD, 1998; Jankowski, 1995; Joerin et al., 2001; Kohsaka, 2001; Korte, 2001; McDonnell & Kemp, 1995; Mohan, 2001; Ralston, 2004; Sadoun, 2003; Saleh & Sadoun, 2004). GIS is used for a wide variety of tasks, including planning store locations, managing land use, planning and designing good transportation systems, and aiding law enforcement agencies. GIS systems are basically ubiquitous computerized mapping programs that help corporations, private groups, and governments to make decisions in an economical manner. A GIS program works by connecting information/data stored in a computer database system to points on a map. Information is displayed in layers, with each succeeding layer laid over the preceding ones. The resulting maps and diagrams can reveal trends or patterns that might be missed if the same information was presented in a traditional spreadsheet or plot. A GIS is a computer system capable of capturing, managing, integrating, manipulating, analyzing, and displaying geographically referenced information. GIS deals with spatial information that uses location within a coordinate system as its reference base (see Figure 1). It integrates common database operations such as query and statistical analysis with the unique visualization and geographic analysis benefits offered by maps. These abilities distinguish GIS from other information systems and make it valuable to a wide range of public and private enterprises for explaining events, predicting outcomes, and planning strategies (Batty et al., 1994; Burrough et al, 1980; Choi & Usery, 2004; Clapp et al., 1997; GIS@Purdue, 2003; Golay et al., 2000; Goodchild et al., 1999; IFFD, 1998; Jankowski, 1995; Joerin et al., 2001; Kohsaka, 2001; Korte, 2001; McDonnell & Kemp, 1995; Mohan, 2001; Ralston, 2004; Sadoun, 2003; Saleh & Sadoun, 2004).

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