Empowering Municipalities through GIS

Improved Data Management Using A GIS

The Town of Vienna in Dane County, Wisconsin recently incorporated a Geographic Information System (GIS) for use by Town employees.


“Town officials wanted a way to better manage important data from multiple sources, and GIS provided the right solution,” shares Scott Anderson, PE, of Snyder & Associates and Town of Vienna Engineer.


Through one centralized, web-based application, the system replaces and enhances the fragmented use of maps, County websites, files, and employee knowledge. Cataloged infrastructure includes manholes, storm sewers, culverts, sanitary sewer, guardrails, and signs.

User-friendly GIS Training Experience

Using ArcGIS online, the Collector Application for ArcGIS, and a Trimble R1 connected to an IPad, Town staff learned to operate the GIS data collection equipment, input information into the system, and edit or add more data as necessary. Once collected data was combined with background data supplied by Dane County, the application was launched for use by Town employees.

It was the first time Snyder & Associates provided GIS equipment and system training, but the process went smoothly and helped reduce project costs for the Town of Vienna.


“Training took just a couple hours with our system,” shares Geoffrey Barnes, Engineering Technician for Snyder & Associates. “It’s very user-friendly with no background in mapping or survey required. Year after year, the database will become more robust as new information is added.”

Reflecting on the experience, Kathy Clark, the Town clerk, has nothing but good things to say:

“As the Town of Vienna Clerk, I am very excited to use our new GIS system developed by Snyder & Associates. In the past, I would have to look in manual files and use the county website when dealing with questions regarding land use, zoning and territorial boundary agreements. With the GIS, all the information I need is in one application. In addition, our sanitary district is completely accessible for instant repairs, along with road culverts and signs. It’s a great resource, and I would recommend it to any other municipality.”

Use of the cloud-based, GIS system will help the Town easily respond to queries from residents, permit applications, and streamline its ability to reach information-based decisions.

Additional Examples of GIS Project Success

Lower Fourmile Creek Greenway Master Plan – GIS was used to analyze terrain, property/land uses, along with existing parks and amenities. The analyzed information was built into a web-based application that provides the public with a better understanding of how the proposed plan was reached.

Pleasantville GIS – This is a great example of a city utilizing a comprehensive GIS system from the ground up. After our survey staff collected highly accurate data on utility features, the information was used to set up a basic database with viewer software on city computers. The online format is user-friendly and allows for efficient updates. This web-based application improved the city’s ability to utilize data and share information with residents.

To learn more about how a GIS could benefit your municipality or business, feel free to contact Scott Anderson.