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City of Rock Island Purchases Leica GS50+ 08.29.2002

August 29, 2002
City to map and inventory physical assets and storm sewers conditions.

The City of Rock Island used the Leica GS50+ base station in collecting utilities data. The base station is mounted on top of a local water tower.


A City of Rock Island staff member collects sewer attributes with the help of a Leica GS50+ GPS/GIS data collection system.
The Public Works Department of the City of Rock Island (Illinois, USA) has purchased two Leica GS50+ data collection systems from Leica Geosystems that are being used to create an inventory of its physical assets to report to the federal government, and map and collect storm sewers attributes. The information collected about the storm sewers will be used to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (MPDES) storm water permit, which is needed prior to releasing storm water into the Mississippi River and Rock River.

While the GS50+ units will be used to periodically update the City’s inventory, the storm sewer project should be completed by April 2003.

To plot and gather utilities data, workers are mapping all manholes, incorporating and labeling them in ESRI’s ArcView, using the GS50+ base station (mounted atop a water tower and controlled remotely) and a Microslate pen tablet. Data such as inverts, pipe size and pipe condition is being recorded. To track data through the thick tree canopy in the area, the Public Works Department is using the GS50’s MaxTrak tracking technology.

Because the GPS signal used with the GS50+ is easily integratable with other third party vendor items, staff members will have the flexibility to incorporate their Leica and ESRI products with other GPS/GIS products of choice for future projects.

In 2003, the City of Rock Island plans to use the GS50+ units to collect road sign and tree inventory, as well as lay out and mark utilities prior to future construction. Plans are also in the works to incorporate their GPS signal into wireless Internet service for use by other departments in the municipality. A wireless network solution is expected to be in place by 2004.

The Public Works Department is working to get other Quad Cities (Rock Island and Moline, Illinois, and Davenport and Bettendorf, Iowa, all USA) to subscribe to using GPS technology. (The Quad Cities area consists of) Currently, Rock Island is the only city in the area to have a base station installed and to extensively use GPS/GIS technology.