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Research Guides

GIS Data Sources

City GIS files and maps.
 
Maps, sites, and tools concerning our campus locations.
 
TAMU buildings, bus routes, athletic facilities, landmarks, and points of interest on campus.
 
Texas A&M Facilities and land use information to support the planning processes of Texas A&M University and its many constituencies.
Historical 

 

Weather
Global near real-time fire information to users to support natural resource and fire managers around the World. FIRMS delivers active fires detected using the MODIS active fire locations processed by the MODIS Rapid Response System. Active fire/hotspot detections in shapefile format are available for the last 24 hours, 48 hours and 7 day time periods. These shape files are updated every hour. Data in KML, NASA World Wind, Web Fire Mapper (WMS) and Climate Modeling Grid (CMG) are also available.

 

Interactive mapping application created by the Coastal Services Center that features tropical cyclone data of both Atlantic and Eastern North pacific basins

The Railroad Commission of Texas (RRC) dataset contains hundreds of spatial layers relating to the oil and gas industry. Themes, which are available for the entire state, include:

  • Surveys
  • Pipelines
  • Wells
  • API’s (unique numeric identifiers)
  • Basemaps at the county level

Downloading RRC Data
To obtain the RRC Dataset, please contact the Map & GIS Library at maps-gis@library.tamu.edu.

Extracting the Data
The data files are compressed into folders with ".tar.gz" extensions. For example, FILENAME.tar.gz.

 To extract the files:

  • Right click on the .tar.gz folder and select “Extract to FILENAME.tar\”
  • Open the resulting FILENAME.tar folder
  • Right click on the FILENAME.tar file and select “Extract to FILENAME\”
  • GIS software can now read the files in FILENAME

Manuals
The dataset comes with three user manuals created by the Railroad Commission of Texas:

  • The Map Manual
  • The Oil and Gas Well Bore System Guide
  • The Mapping Well Data Download Manual

FIPS

  • The data is available by county.
  • Each county is labeled by its Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS).
  • An alphabetical list of counties and their corresponding FIPS can be found in Appendix B of the Map Manual.

Spatial Projection

  • The data's geographic projection datum is NAD27.
  • Please visit our tutorials page or make an appointment at the Map & GIS Library to learn more about projecting spatial data.

 

Please email the Map & GIS Library with any questions you may have regarding the RRC Dataset: maps-gis@library.tamu.edu.

 

 

Agriculture 

Created by the Global Landscapes Initiative and hosted by the University of Minnesota, includes: water depletion; cropland and pasture areas; harvest areas and yields for crops; yield gaps and climate bins; fertilizer applications, consumption, and balance; potential natural vegetation; and carbon stocks in potential natural vegetation
 
Soil Data
 
Soil data and information produced by the National Cooperative Soil Survey. It is operated by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRC) and provides access to the largest natural resource information system in the world, including soil maps and data fro more than 95 percent of the U.S. counties. The electronic version of published soil surveys can be accessed here.

Elevation (DEMS, LiDAR, Topography, etc.)

ESA Satellite Images
Created by the European Space Agency (ESA), offers satellite imagery from around the world in the highest resolution available as TIFF and JPEG images. The gallery contains images used throughout the ESA Portal; most of them have been released publicly from ESA. You may use ESA images for educational or informational purposes.

National Map (USGS)
High-quality, geospatial data and information from the USGS as well as other federal, state, and local partners. It includes orthoimagery, elevation, geographic names, hydrography, boundaries, transportation, structures, and land cover. It offers several interactive viewers:

  • National Map Viewer contains data sets from many contributing agencies.
  • USGS TopoView Beta access to JPEG''s, GeoTFF's, KMZ's, and GeoPDF's of the USGS's Historical Topographic Map Collection.
  • National Map Seamless Server is the primary site to download USGS imagery, elevation and land cover data.
  • National Map 'Best Practices' Viewer offers the most up-to-date National Map road, boundaries, structures, and other vector data.
  • National Hydrography Data (NHD) Viewer contains hydrography digital spatial data, such as: lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, springs and wells. It offers data extraction on medium, high or local resolution, and is delivered as a personal geodatabase, file geodatabase, or shapefile.

USGS Global Visualization Viewer (GloVis)
Online search and order tool for selected satellite and aerial data from EROS holdings. It allows browsing of images within USGS' inventory. A download interface is provided for free datasets.

USGS LandsatLook Viewer
Real-time images from Landsat satellites. It displays the images in the 5, 4, 3 (Red, Green, Blue) band combination for both the TM and ETM+ sensors at resolution of 30 meters.

USGS GTOPO30
Gobal digital elevation models (DEM) with a horizontal grid spacing of 30 arc seconds (approximately 1 kilometer)

USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS)
One of the largest collections of Earth imagery: satellite images and data, aerial photography, elevation and land cover, digitized maps,and more.

USGS 15" Topo Index
It lists sources for digital historic 15" topos for the US, created by Illinois State Library's Map Librarian.

USGS 7.5" Topo Index
It lists sources for digital historic 7.5" topos for the US, created by Illinois State Library's Map Librarian.

SGS 7.5" Topo Maps in KMZ
Over 50,000 7.5-minute USGS topographic maps to view in Google Earth, created by Google Earth Library.

TexMaps
Free aerial photos of the Texas Coast.

The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth
Over 60,000 astronaut photographs from 1961 through the present. A clickable map, mission-roll-frame search, and technical search are provided to find photos. Downloadable KML files for use in Google Earth are available.

Geology/Geophysics

STATEMAP GIS Databases (selected areas), and a set of interactive maps with its downloadable data of sequestrian of greenhouse gases in brine-formation database, Texas Coastal Hazard Atlas, Texas Shoreline Change Project, and Sand Resources of SE Texas Continental Shelf. Digital data is available with a fee, including digital quadrangle (DQ) Geologic Atlas of Texas on CD-Roms. Through STATEMAP Project Geologic Maps, black and white geologic maps of selected locations are offered for a fee.
 
Interactive maps including data from the Earth and sun, including Earth observations from space and sea floor data. It offers software and conversion tools, as well as downloadable shapefiles extracted from interactive maps.
 
Marine geophysics: tracklines, gravity, sediment, water column sonar; Marine geology: geosample data, crustal age grids, NOS seabed descriptions, and ocean drilling; Ocean depths & relief: coastal grids, create custom grids, DEMs, ETOPO1, global grids, fishing maps, Great Lakes, Hydrographic surveys, IHODCDB, multibeam bathymetry, paleobathmetry, shorelines, and tsunami inundation.
 
Railroad Commission of Texas' viewer for oil, gas, and pipeline data. It links to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department GIS Lab, which offers downloadable data in arc interchange and shapefile format, and a PDF map gallery. It directs to the Texas Water Development Board GIS Data, which offers maps, GIS data and interactive maps; TNRIS and StartMap GIS Data; and the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality GIS portal.
 

Official Portal of Texas GIS Resources.
Railroad Commission of Texas' viewer for oil, gas, and pipeline data. It links to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department GIS Lab, which offers downloadable data in arc interchange and shapefile format, and a PDF map gallery. It directs to the Texas Water Development Board GIS Data, which offers maps, GIS data and interactive maps; TNRIS and StartMap GIS Data; and the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality GIS portal.

 

Bathymetry


General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans (GEBCO)
Global bathymetric data, echo-sounding data; GEBCO Digital Atlas (GDA): global digital bathymetric contours, coastlines, trackline control data, and global one arc-minute bathymetric grid (GEBCO One Minute Grid).


Satellite Geodesy (UC San Diego)
Bathymetry and radar altimetry.


Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System (GOOS)
Bathymetry and shorelines.



Shorelines

DigitalCoast
Composes the National Coastal Asseessment Framework (CAF), providing NOAA's GIS data of counties, states, boundaries, watersheds, shorelines, etc.

GSHHS (NOAA)
Global self-consistent, hierarchical, high-resolution shoreline database.


Shoreline Data Explorer (NOAA)  
Shoreline data of the U.S. and adjacent islands.


NOAA Shoreline Website
Global, national, and local scale shoreline data; Shoreline change analysis, nautical chart production, cartographic representation, and boundary determination.


NGDC 3 Arc-Second Coastal Relief Model
U.S. coastal zone with view of the seafloor.


TAMU's Texas Coastal Communities Atlas
Boundaries, policy data (coastal management zones and building code), transportation, census, rainfall, topography, ecological, hydrology, protected areas, recreation areas, development (property values, populated places, damns, and wetlands permits), natural hazards, coastal development, and offshore risk data. Some open access layers are available to download as shapefiles.



Nautical Charts

NOAA Office of the Coast Survey
Local, regional, and global nautical charts and tools.


NOAA Electronic Navigational Charts (ENC)
Electronic navigational charts, digital hydrographic data, historical charts, and U.S. maritime zones.  


NOAA Nautical Charts
Paper and electronic charts.

Transportation

National geographic databases of transportation infrastructure and facilities
 
TxDOT annually publishes its roadway inventory data in a variety of common GIS and tabular formats. Data includes GIS linework and all roadway inventory attributes. TxDOT submits this data annually to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) as part of the Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) program.
 
Texas Counties data, including: relief maps (JPEGS), boundaries, roads, populated places, hydrology, census data, satellite imagery, and DEMs.

Local Cities and Counties

Property search application displays the properties and associated tax reports. Our Library catalog holds the BCAD Data from 2004-2012, available to review and copy at Map and GIS Collections and Services.

 

Interactive Mapping Service offers preliminary flood insurance rate maps (FIRM). The final FIRM is available after the appeal process and the final determination is made

 

Aerials, streets, new developments, school districts, capital improvements, cemetery (ownership and grave location), census, garage sales, and sex offender mapping services.

 

Shapefiles of county and city limits, cemeteries, rivers, streams, railroads, roads and 100-year floodplain.

Cities in Texas

Austin

 
Geodatabases, shapefiles, and Google KMZ files of airports, bridges, streets, city limits, contours, county boundaries, flood zone, Envision Central Texas (ECT) Model, Hydrography, Land Fragmentation Analysis, Landfills, Orthos (1997-2008), Parcels (2005, 2008), topos, vegetation, soils, and more.
 
Aerials (1962-2008), address points, utilities, topography, land use, zoning, environmental, transportation, base maps, and regional data.
 
Map viewer of the city's GIS data and associated database information.

 

Dallas

 
Parcel information and links to parcel appraisal account information.
 
Parcel, contours, transportation, boundaries, floodplain, aerials from 2011-2017, and other useful layers.
 
GIS coordinator for 16-counties of North Central Texas, centered around the two urban centers of Dallas and Fort Worth. Geographic data for the NCTCOG region, as well aerial photography and digital elevation contours available for purchase by its members at a much-reduced cost.
 
Shapefiles and maps of parcels; county, city, and school district boundaries; hydrography and more.

 

Houston

Over 300 data layers. Portions of GIMS data is available only to City of Houston agencies, however some are accessible to the public. ROW and bikeways data are available only to view, but not to download.
 
Administrative boundaries, locations, routes, pavement, right-of-way, subdivision, and Lambert Facet Page (grids commonly used by Harris County Appraisal District and City of Houston Department of Public Works and Engineering) datasets.
 
Appraisal, city, college, county, emergency, fire, highway, school polygons, and other data.
 
Harris County data and more.
 
Available by contacting the Harris County Public Infrastructure Department Architecture and Engineering Division GIS Group.
 
Vector data covers only the H-GAC region; however, several are regional and statewide.
 
Southeast Texas Addressing and Referencing Map. Data is free to TAMU students who are conducting research projects. Licensing restrictions apply. Please ask for the CD at Map and GIS front desk. The LibCat record provides more information.
 

Environment & Infrastructure

Brazos County Data

Shapefiles of county and city limits, cemeteries, rivers, streams, railroads, roads, and 100-year floodplain.
 
Property search application displays the properties and associated tax reports. Our Library catalog holds the BCAD Data from 2004-2012, available to review and copy at Map and GIS Collections and Services.
 
Interactive Mapping Service offers preliminary flood insurance rate maps (FIRM). The final FIRM is available after the appeal process and the final determination is made.
 
Aerials, streets, new developments, school districts, capital improvements, cemetery (ownership and grave location), census, garage sales, and sex offender mapping services.
 
City GIS files and maps.
 
Maps, sites, and tools concerning our campus locations. 
 
TAMU buildings, bus routes, athletic facilities, landmarks, and points of interest on campus.

 

Texas Cities Data

 
Austin

Austin GIS OpenData

Geodatabases, shapefiles, and Google KMZ files of airports, bridges, streets, city limits, contours, county boundaries, flood zone, Envision Central Texas (ECT) Model, Hydrography, Land Fragmentation Analysis, Landfills, Orthos (1997-2008), Parcels (2005, 2008), topos, vegetation, soils, and more.
 
Aerials (1962-2008), address points, utilities, topography, land use, zoning, environmental, transportation, base maps, and regional data.
 
Map viewer of the city’s GIS data and associated database information. 

Dallas
 
Parcel information and links to parcel appraisal account information.
 
Parcel, contours, transportation, boundaries, floodplain, aerials from 2011-2017, and other useful layers.
 
GIS coordinator for 16-counties of North Central Texas, centered around the two urban centers of Dallas and Fort Worth. Geographic data for the NCTCOG region, as well aerial photography and digital elevation contours available for purchase by its members at a much-reduced cost.
 
Shapefiles and maps of parcels; county, city, and school district boundaries; hydrography and more.

Houston

Houston GIS OpenData

Over 300 data layers. Portions of GIMS data is available only to City of Houston agencies, however some are accessible to the public. ROW and bikeways data are available only to view, but not for download. 
 
Clearinghouse for municipal GIS datasets for the City of Houston. Contains a link to Houston GIS OpenData and more. Datasets include: administrative boundaries, locations, routes, pavement, right-of-way, subdivision, and Lambert Facet Page--grids commonly used by Harris County Appraisal District and City of Houston Department of Public Works and Engineering.
 
Appraisal, city, college, county, emergency, fire, highway, school polygons, and other data.
 
Harris County data and more.
 
Available by contacting the Harris County Public Infrastructure Department Architecture and Engineering Division GIS Group. 
 
Vector data covers only the H-GAC region; however, several are regional and statewide.
 
Data is free to TAMU students who are conducting research projects. Licensing restrictions apply. Please ask for the CD at Map and GIS front desk. The LibCat record provides more information.

GIS Databases with Presentation & Analytical Components

Weather

NOAA's National Hurricane Center
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)'s National Hurricane Center provides interactive maps and data downloads for the weather conditions related to Hurricane Harvey.

Image Collection on Space.com
Remotely sensed images of Harvey from space. 

Emergency Response Data

Harvey Open Data
Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data (HIFLD) includes data layers of emergency services, hazards and incidents, community lifelines, community resources, vulnerable population infrastructure, transportation, imagery, base and population data, US National Grid maps, and additional tools. 

City of Houston

Houston GIS OpenData
Data provided by the city of Houston, including: management districts, zip codes, voting precincts, neighborhood boundaries, community programs, libraries, schools, public buildings, trauma centers, police districts, fire districts, demographics, traffic, bike lanes, and many more. 

City of Houston Geographic Information and Management System
Over 300 data layers. Portions of GIMS data is available only to City of Houston agencies, however some are accessible to the public. ROW and bikeways data are available only to view, but not for download. 

City of Houston GIS Portal (COHGIS)
Clearinghouse for municipal GIS datasets for the City of Houston. Contains a link to Houston GIS OpenData and more. Datasets include: administrative boundaries, locations, routes, pavement, right-of-way, subdivision, and Lambert Facet Page--grids commonly used by Harris County Appraisal District and City of Houston Department of Public Works and Engineering.

Harris County

Harris County Appraisal District GIS Data
Appraisal, city, college, county, emergency, fire, highway, school polygons, and other data.

Harris County GIS Data
Harris County data and more.

Harris County Public Infrastructure Department Engineering Division’s GIS Library
Available by contacting the Harris County Public Infrastructure Department Architecture and Engineering Division GIS Group. 

Houston-Galveston Area Council Data Clearinghouse (HGAC)
Vector data covers only the H-GAC region; however, several are regional and statewide.

STAR*Map
Data is free to TAMU students who are conducting research projects. Licensing restrictions apply. Please ask for the CD at Map and GIS front desk. The LibCat record provides more information.

Coastal Texas

Coastal Communities Planning Atlas
Developed by the Texas Sustainable Coastal Initiative, the atlas provides layers of hazards, policies, administrative boundaries, transportation, roadways, historical tropical storm winds, annualized tropical storm loss, landscape features, and more

Historical Hurricane Data

National Hurricane Center Data
The NHC provides historical hurricane data beginning in 2008. 

National Hurricane Center Data Archive
The NHC Data Archive provides cyclone data beginning in 1958.

Unisys Weather
Historical track data, including: coordinates, sustained winds, and central pressure. Satellite images, surface, upper air, and radar data are also available.

Weather Underground Hurricane and Tropical Cyclone Data
Number of storms and hurricanes per year, related deaths, damage (millions USD) and retired hurricane names beginning in 1851.

Data.gov Hurricane Data Portal
Open data and tools provided by the government, including data related to agriculture, safety, climate, oceans, ecosystems, energy, and more.

NOAA's Historical Hurricane Tracks - GIS Map Viewer
Interactive maps and data downloads for over 6000 cyclones over the last 150 years. Data tools and dashboards are also available.

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