City of San Diego Analyzes Trends in Ocean Data with Dynamic GIS Tools

2011 Esri CA/HI/NV Regional User Group Proceedings

Dawn Olson and Jodi Luostarinen

“The City of San Diego Public Utilities Department’s Environmental Monitoring and Technical Services (EMTS) Division is responsible for ensuring compliance with California Ocean Plan water-contact standards, detecting movement and dispersion of the wastewater field, and identifying any changes to marine communities, water quality, or sediment conditions that may be associated with wastewater discharge.

“The City has enlisted the help of Esri business partner Quartic Solutions LLC to develop a web based GIS application which greatly increases staff access to ocean monitoring data. The Web application, called ‘BioMap’, has analytical tools which will enable staff to synthesize and explore large volumes of data dynamically, in ways not possible in the past. The BioMap GIS application is served by Esri’s ArcGIS Server product and was built in Adobe Flex using Esri’s API to deliver a fast, flashy, functional, and intuitive user interface. Several of Esri’s free ArcGIS Online web services are utilized for the basemap, and PHP is used as the connector to access the Oracle database holding the City’s ocean monitoring data.

“BioMap’s main strength is its ability to simplify complicated spatial processing for users not trained in GIS. It also makes touch-of-a-button, rapid feedback data exploration possible. It will reduce the time scientists currently spend performing data manipulation tasks, and it allows statistical comparisons on large, interactively selected datasets. It can also quickly show users the spatial relationships and temporal trends in tabular data by highlighting selected data points within a map. So it should come as no surprise that we fully expect BioMap to revolutionize the analysis and presentation of ocean monitoring data in San Diego.”