• Assessment of Post-Fire Vegetation Recovery in Washington State Using Landsat and Geographical Data

      Sanchez Trigueros, Fernando; Hare, Leah (The University of Arizona., 2020-05)
      Consequences of wildfires often result in the loss or change of vegetation, causing a reduction of biodiversity and an increase in soil erosion. Studies aiming to understand the potential dynamics in vegetation regeneration after a fire can benefit restoration programs by defining probable contributing factors. This report considered environmental variables and their impact on fire recovery for six fires in Washington State over a five-year period. Variables included the differenced normalized burn ratio (dNBR), the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), land cover type, and topological variables. Regression modeling was performed using both Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) and Geographic Weighted Regression (GWR) to determine the best-fit model. Over the five-year period, mixed vegetation showed the highest recovery rate with varied rates for both forested and desert vegetation. OLS regression demonstrated that land cover had high multicollinearity with other variables and land cover factors, thus it was excluded from GWR calculations. The best-fit models revealed a positive relationship with pre-fire NDVI and burn severity for most fire locations, indicating an increase in revegetation based on an increase in burn severity. Topological variable slope had both positive and negative relationships with NDVI. R2 values calculated through GWR were between 0.85 and 0.98. As Washington State is a diverse, widespread area, this study serves as an initial step to understand the potential relationships between fire recovery and the contributing factors. Additional steps should be taken to focus on specific vegetation type and assessing longer recovery time.
    • Auto-Generating Maps Using Open-Source GIS and Python

      Lukinbeal, Chris; McPherson, Mercedes (The University of Arizona., 2017-12-19)
      Fund for the Arts is one of the oldest arts fund in the country. Since its formation in 1949, the organization has raised over 200 million for the community, which includes Kentucky and Southern Indiana. This Master’s project will focus on one of the organization’s programs entitled 5x5. The goal of 5x5 is to expose elementary school students to five art experiences before they finish the fifth grade. Several years’ worth of data has been compiled, including school names, performance names, performance type, number of students served, and total cost, among others. Using a combination of these parameters, maps will be auto-generated using CSV templates. The auto-generated maps will show a variety of data, including the amount of art funding per zip code, per program type, per grade, per art group, per school, and per student. The maps will serve as visual evidence of the program’s progress and will be shared with Fund for the Arts Board of Directors and CEO, internal staff, as well as other community stakeholders such as community liaisons, participating schools, current and potential donors and the Louisville Metro Council. Fund for the Arts is a nonprofit that does not have access to ESRI products. This Master’s project combines cartography and scripting to create a functioning deliverable using open-source GIS software that enables the organization to auto-generate maps at will and forego the need to request maps from the local university once a year.
    • Building a Web Application and Land Navigation Course to Help Develop Military Relevant Informal GIS Education

      Lukinbeal, Chris; Ruff, Alexander (The University of Arizona., 2017-12)
      Throughout history, military officers have relied on maps to provide spatial information and make informed battlefield and other problem-solving decisions. Today’s officers can put even more spatial information at a soldier’s fingertips if they are made aware of the power of geographic information systems and software. This paper makes the argument that an informal education and introduction to the uses of geographic information systems (GIS) during their participation in reserve officer training corps (ROTC) can help provide future officers with a basic understanding on how GIS can impact their ability to solve military relevant problems with these technologies and can aid in their decision making. This project created a web application using python and based on military mapping manuals and defense tools that allow a user to create a model of how quickly the user could be able to move over a given terrain. This web application was given to military officers in ROTC training at the University of Arizona prior to participation in a land navigation exercise to help them plan and prepare their path through the event. Students using the app prior to the exercise were able to see how the information provided by GIS can help them make decisions and times were compared between those that used the tool and those that did not. This tool, and the subsequent exercise provided increased awareness in military applications of GIS for those future military officers and helps inspire them to pursue more information on the technology.
    • Canopy Change Assessment and Water Resources Utilization in the Civano Community, Arizona

      Psillas, Jennifer; Danloe, John; Pan, Yajuan (The University of Arizona., 2016-12)
      The Civano community of Tucson, Arizona, is built for sustainability. Trees and plants are precious resources in the community and balancing human needs and natural resources. The design of rainwater harvesting systems and the usage of reclaimed water inside the community effectively irrigate plants and save drinking water. This project estimates canopy changes over time and explores the effect of water resources on plant growth for developed areas and natural areas, respectively. This project generates land cover classifications for 2007, 2010, and 2015 using supervised classification method and measures canopy cover change over time. Based on City of Tucson Water “harvesting rainwater guide to water-efficient landscaping”, this project discusses if water supply meets plant water demand in the developed areas of the community. Additionally, the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data for developed area and natural area over ten years are compared and provide a correlation analysis with water sources. The results show that canopy cover across the entire community decreased from 2007 to 2010, then increased from 2010 to 2015. Water supply in the developed areas is sufficient for plant water demand. In natural areas plant growth changes dramatically as a result of precipitation fluctuation. In addition, it’s proved that 2011 National Land Cover Database (NLCD) tree canopy underestimates canopy cover in the Civano community. The final products not only provide the fundamental canopy cover data for other studies, also serve as a reference of water efficient landscaping within a community.
    • A Comparison of Remote Sensing Indices and a Temporal Study of Cienegas at Cienega Creek from 1984 to 2011 using Multispectral Satellite Imagery

      Wilson, Natalie R. (The University of Arizona., 2014)
      Desert wetlands, in particular those slow moving bodies of water known as cienegas, are important sites for biodiversity in arid landscapes and serve as indicators of hydrological functioning on the landscape-level. One of the most extensive systems of cienegas, historical or extant, in southeastern Arizona lies along Cienega Creek, located southeast of Tucson, Arizona. Satellite imagery analysis is heavily utilized to determine landscape-level trends, but cienegas present a challenge to traditional analysis methods. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), the classic measure of vegetation greenness, reacts counter-intuitively to open water and is affected by open ground, both common occurrences in cienega habitats. Additional remote sensing indices have been developed that balance sensitivity to these environmental elements. This research explores these remote sensing indices at Cienega Creek applying one topographic index to current elevation data and five spectral indices to Thematic Mapper imagery from 1984 to 2011. Temporal trends were identified for all spectral indices and all indices were compared for suitability in cienega habitats. Temporal trends were analyzed for spatial clustering and spatial trends identified. The Normalized Difference Infrared Index utilizing Landsat Thematic Mapper band 5 outperformed other indices at differentiating between cienega, riparian, and upland habitats and is more suitable than NDVI for analyzing cienega habitats in such circumstances.
    • A Comprehensive Study of Forest Health and Structure Following the West Fork Fire Complex in Southwest Colorado through Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR)

      Sanchez Trigueros, Fernando; Rodriguez, Michael (The University of Arizona., 2021-05)
      In June 2013, southwest Colorado faced one of the largest wildfires in state history, the West Fork Fire Complex. Being composed of three separate fires (Papoose, West Fork, and Windy Pass), the wildfire burned approximately 110,000 acres within the Rio Grande National Forest. This project aims to understand how the West Fork Fire affected forest structure and recovery, and measures these impacts using Landsat 8 imagery to analyze NDVI and NBR. NDVI was calculated to understand impacts to vegetation, while NBR was calculated to understand overall burn severities. Specific measurements of NDVI and NBR values were collected across 30 designated control points within each set of imagery. NDVI results showed a 63% decrease in control point values from June to August 2013, indicating immediate impacts to forest structure. The average values fell from greater than 0.20 to less than 0.10, classifying these once sparsely covered lands into areas of barren rock or sand. NBR values saw a decrease of 309% over the same period. ΔNBR values averaged 0.33 which indicated moderate to low severity burns throughout the landscape while ΔNDVI averaged 0.12. NDVI found a 123% increase in July 2016 compared with the 2014 data, and NBR detected a 114% increase. Both analyses presented higher values in 2016 compared with their 2013 data, showing evidence of forest recovery. The results indicated the West Fork Complex had a moderate to low impact. Additionally, results demonstrated how NDVI and NBR helped to classify the severity of wildfires, vegetation health, and how these methods can be reproduced.
    • Creating a Secure Data Architecture and Digital Platform for the Borderlands Observatory Collaborative

      Lukinbeal, Chris; Bristol, Warren (The University of Arizona., 2021-05-10)
      The Borderlands Observatory Collaborative is a group of advocates, NGOs, and academics that want to promote ethical, horizontal research on border militarization. This collaboration created a data architecture and digital platform for NGOs, advocacy groups, and academics to communicate their information to the public. ArcGIS Hub provided an interface to create a user-friendly platform to store, mix and display spatial and other information and keep data secure and private for collaborators. It takes untold sums of human effort, labor, technical know-how, people power, and geospatial tools to create datasets used in the region, including humanitarian, social, and environmental, as well as ongoing monitoring of changing issues. The purpose of this Master Project is to detail the creation of this Hub site and one case study from the project on mapping the construction, litigation, and environmental policies associated with Trump and Bush era border walls. The case study focuses on the collaborative work performed with The Sierra Club utilizing ArcGIS Hub and AGOL tools. This study utilizes Public Participation GIS (PPGIS) feedback from collaborative members to guide the creation of a secure data architecture. This study explains the techniques used from PPGIS feedback to create a Hub and applies PPGIS to construct a border wall AGOL Dashboard. The collaboration in this study is ongoing, but a noted finding from this PPGIS experience was with information that is highly sensitive, personal, and political, the collaborative tended to prefer less centralization and a diffused data sharing platform and power structure for ethical reasons.
    • Distribution of Oil and Gas Well Data Through a Web Based Map Application

      Richards, Kenneth T. (The University of Arizona., 2013)
      The Arizona Oil and Gas Commission in conjunction with the Arizona Geological Survey have collected a large amount of data for the oil and gas wells in the State of Arizona. The data covers over 1,000 wells that were drilled from the 1940s to present. This data includes copies of permits, location information, scanned copies of well logs and digitized versions of the well logs in .las file format. These files have been difficult to distribute efficiently because of an unfriendly web user interface. The purpose of this project is to give the Arizona Geological Survey a way to distribute the oil and gas well data through an effective web application. The web application will leverage existing web services at the Arizona Geological Survey. To create this map I used the Esri JavaScript API. In this application the users can select multiple wells by clicking and dragging over the well heads they want. This will then display the metadata in a grid along with hyperlinks to the available files for those wells. This data will be primarily used by companies involved with carbon sequestration or others seeking information for geological exploration.
    • Exploring 3D Visualization Techniques Using Geographic Information Systems Technology at the University of Arizona

      Lukinbeal, Chris; Wadsworth, James (The University of Arizona., 2019-12-11)
      As computers and geographic information systems (GIS) technology improves, more advanced visualization and analysis becomes possible. One area of GIS technology that is seeing improvement is the development of 3D GIS data. The primary focus of this project was to explore three types of building models that can be created from varying quality data and used by a wide variety of users. Using ESRI software, the goal was to provide guidance for GIS users to develop high quality 3D data relevant to their specific needs. Examples of created 3D products are photorealistic-textured buildings, thematically symbolized buildings, and 3D renderings designed for interior navigation. The resulting data were compiled into an interactive web application for visualization and making comparisons between methodologies. All methods involved using 2D building footprint source data and leveraging the attributes and geometry to create 3D structures. These models provide viewers with additional information that would be impossible to convey in two dimensions, such as viewing a route that occupies the same space on different floors of a building, like navigating between offices or classrooms. Interior navigation is one of many examples of an application that can be built upon the fundamental 3D data examined in this project. Additionally, institutions or organizations seeking to develop their first 3D data from 2D data could potentially use the findings of this project to inform their decisions and start supporting the advancement of 3D GIS at a faster rate than if they were to attempt to develop these data independently.
    • Feature Film Residential Use and Aspirational Depictions of People within Los Angeles, California

      Lukinbeal, Chris; Grantham, Laura (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Feature films and other visual media are well known for not showing realistic portrayals of how people live but rather for depicting an aspirational reality in which the way people are portrayed to live does not match with their social-economic circumstances. This project seeks to probe this phenomenon by examining residential locations used for feature film productions between 2008 and 2011 in Los Angeles County. This project uses GIS analyses and Business Analyst to answer the following question: What residential locations are most prominently depicted in the Greater Los Angeles region in feature films in 2008-2011? More specifically I focus in on which neighborhoods, and homes in those neighborhoods, are used most frequently for feature film production. The project examines the socio-demographic characteristics of the neighborhoods and homes most frequently used in the greater LA area to find what could be called a Hollywood aspirational view of Los Angeles: what it is, where is it located, and what are the predominate socio-demographic makeup of those regions predominantly portrayed.
    • Geospatial Web-Mapping and Application Development for the Southeast Arizona Sustainable Recreation Strategy

      Little, Jessica (The University of Arizona., 2016-12-14)
      Within the last decade, the United States Forest Service (USFS) has initiated a nation-wide project of Sustainable Recreation as a response to the decreasing amount of resources available to maintain the current recreation infrastructure, including trails, campgrounds, etc. These unmaintained trails and facilities pose a potential safety threat to users and the landscape in which they reside. This smaller pilot project, as part of the Southeast Arizona Sustainable Recreation Strategy, is the second pilot project in the Southwest Region of the USFS aimed at growing the Sustainable Recreation initiative. The main goal of this project is to create the framework for an inter-agency web application of recreation opportunities in Southeast Arizona, with an aim to increase communication between land management agencies, and to increase public participation and conservation of public lands. To achieve this, recreation data were gathered from multiple participating agencies and merged into a new schema in order to provide useful attribute information. This schema was then uploaded to ArcGIS Online and saved as a web map for internal, agency use. In addition, a public-facing web application and corresponding Story Map were also created. The result better portrays the Sustainable Recreation initiative and provides a one-stop-shop of useful recreation information and links for users who wish to become more involved. This project provides the groundwork for which more data from additional agencies and areas can be added and the participation of both land management agencies and the general public can grow.
    • A Habitat Suitability Analysis of Texas Horned Lizards in Texas and New Mexico

      Sanchez Trigueros, Fernando; Piehler, Reid (The University of Arizona., 2021-05)
      The Texas Horned Lizard (Phrynosoma cornutum) is a state-protected lizard native to the American Southwest. To rebuild the Texas Horned Lizard population, they are bred in captivity and released into the wild. Identifying factors that impact habitat suitability is vital to finding the proper areas for release and reintroduction. Environmental and human factors were examined in Texas and New Mexico counties native to the Texas Horned Lizard, as well as counties without known sightings, to determine which factors most impact habitat suitability. Four statistical and geospatial software packages were used to map, analyze, and evaluate 24 potential variables and it was discovered that elevation, road density, natural gas pipeline density, seasonal rainfall, land use category, and proximity to Red Harvester Ants are all statistically significant to Texas Horned Lizard habitat suitability at a 95% confidence level. Texas Horned Lizards are most prevalent in counties with low elevation, high percentage of open water or snow, low precipitation levels, and native habitats for Red Harvester Ants. Horned Lizards are also less prevalent where road density or natural gas pipeline density is high. No significant difference was detected in habitat suitability relative to Imported Fire Ants as suggested in previous studies. To protect viable environments for Texas Horned Lizard reintroduction, pipeline and road construction should be limited in the most suitable regions: eastern and southern New Mexico, the southern Gulf Coast, the Texas Panhandle, Edwards Plateau, and along the Rio Grande.
    • High Speed / Commuter Rail Suitability Analysis For Central And Southern Arizona

      Deveney, Matthew R. (The University of Arizona., 2015)
      Current transportation methods within the Central Arizona region revolve primarily around automobiles. In order for the region to become more economically resilient and environmentally sustainable, alternative transportation methods must be considered. One such alternative that has shown great promise in other regions of the United States is rail transport. Rail transport, including commuter rail or high speed rail, has proven to not only be an effective alternative to automobile transport, but also as a more environmentally sustainable transportation option. The I-11 Super Corridor study, a part of the University of Arizona’s Sustainable City Project 2014, applied next generation urban planning design ideas to the planned Interstate 11 corridor, a major transportation artery that will connect Mexico and Canada. This study inspired this project’s focus on the concept of identifying suitable routes for new transportation infrastructure within the central and southern Arizona regions. Through the incorporation of commuter or high speed rail within central and southern Arizona, a more resilient regional economy and environment can be created. The previous I-11 Super Corridor study presented the incorporation of different regional factors, including population density and economic statistics, to determine suitable routes for future transportation corridors. This project integrates the utilization of specific local and regional data and advanced GIS analysis to determine suitable routes for new rail transport corridors within Maricopa, Pinal and Pima Counties.
    • Identifying Housing Patterns in Pima County, Arizona Using the DEYA Affordability Index and Geospatial Analysis

      Nevarez Martinez, Deyanira (The University of Arizona., 2015)
      When the Fair Housing Act of 1968 was passed 47 years ago, the United States was in the midst of the civil rights movement and fair housing was identified as a pillar of equality. While, progress has been made, there is much work that needs to be done in order to achieve integration. As a country, the United States is a highly segregated country. It is important to understand the factors that contribute to this and it is important to understand the relationships that exists between them in order to attempt to solve the problem. While the legal barriers to integration have been lifted choices continue to be limited to families of color that lack the resources to live in desirable neighborhoods. The ultimate goal of this study is to examine the relationship between the impact of individual indicators and housing patterns in the greater Tucson/Pima county region. An affordability index, the DEYA index, was created to determine where affordability is at its highest. The index includes different weights for foreclosure, Pima County spending on affordable housing, the existence of Pima County general obligations bond affordable housing projects, land value and inclusion in the community land trust. Once this was determined a regression analysis was used to determine the relationship between affordability and individual factors that may be affecting integration. The indicators used were broken down into 3 categories: the categories were education, housing and neighborhoods and employment and economic health.
    • Identifying Opportunities for Community Solar: A Study of Maricopa and Pinal Counties

      Francis, Karol (The University of Arizona., 2016)
      Photovoltaic (PV) solar electricity generation has the potential to reduce the demand for more traditional fossil and nuclear power generation. Community PV solar installations allow energy users to share the electricity generated by these plants. Optimal siting of community solar installations will allow for maximum electricity generation while avoiding environmental conflicts, as well as, minimizing construction costs. This study identifies opportunities for community solar plants in Maricopa and Pinal Counties, Arizona, of ¼-acre in size. Input parameters fall into economic, physical, and environmental categories. Each of the input parameters were classified from 1 (not suitable) to 9 (highly suitable). Next, the classified rasters in each category were weighed according to importance, and Esri’s Weighted Sum tool was used to generate a combined raster for the category. The three resulting environmental, economic, and physical characteristic rasters were weighed again, and the Weighted Sum tool was used to generate a raster of community solar suitability scores. Next, a mask of locations inappropriate for community-scale solar development was created, including lakes, rivers, streams, and residential rooftops, which are too small to accommodate ¼-acre community solar installations. The masked areas were removed from the suitability raster, and the suitability raster was reclassified using standard deviations to generate a preference map with values ranging from 1 (low preference) to 3 (high preference). The model output reveals 68 percent of the study area is of medium or high preference for community solar installations. Maricopa and Pinal counties provide many opportunities for community solar installations.
    • An Introduction to Identifying Nonpoint Sources of Water Pollution Using a Modified Land Use Conflict Analysis Identification Strategy (LUCIS) Model, Non-point Source Identification Strategy: NPSIS

      Cziesch, Jarrett (The University of Arizona., 2015)
      This paper examines the Non-Point Source Identification Strategy (NPSIS); a modification of the Land Use Conflict Identification Strategy (LUCIS): NPSIS is a raster model useful for identifying non-point sources of water pollution from three known contributors (agriculture, domestic, and natural background). By using a standard operating procedure, developers are able to create standardized datasets useful for identifying non-point sources of water pollution throughout the contiguous United States. The NPSIS model process requires the use of three “non-point source water pollution” contributors. A contributor is termed as a Non-Point Category (NPC) that contains collective elements (i.e. nutrient applications for agricultural purposes and urban runoff from highly developed areas). Using a survey, water resource professionals familiar with chosen study areas rank each NPC element according to potential impact to water quality. Following the survey, raster datasets that represent each NPC and impact to water quality are created using a lowest to highest (“1-9”) ordinal rank system derived from survey results after which each dataset is normalized using a (“1-3”) ordinal rank. Finally, the normalized NPC datasets are combined into one final model useful for identifying each dominant NPC by rank and location within a specified USGS watershed. In conclusion, the modifications to the LUCIS method yields results beneficial for identifying non-point source loads of water pollution.
    • Modeling the Hillside Development Overlay Zone

      Psillas, Jennifer; Avis, Jack; Jackson, Chloe (The University of Arizona., 2016-12)
      Sustainable urban growth can be achieved in part by increasing density through infill development. Done right, infill development encourages already developed areas to become more diverse and livable, while limiting urban sprawl and all the public health, environmental, and infrastructure problems that accompany it. In Pima County’s 2015 update to the Comprehensive Plan, infill development is identified as a goal for land use policy. This study utilizes a Python script to build a model of the Hillside Development Overlay Zone (HDZ) to aid in removing zoning barriers to this goal. This a) improves the permitting process; b) encourages purchase of parcels outside of hillside areas and; c) encourages innovative design on hillside areas. The visualization is available on Pima County’s MapGuide website, allowing developers to make informed decisions about purchasing, permitting, and designing on HDZ parcels. In addition, this study uses a Kernel Density analysis to suggest areas where HDZ can be removed, without losing protection for mountainous areas. These suggestions are submitted to Pima County Development Services.
    • Monitoring urban land-use trends using remote sensed imagery and GIS for the Tucson, Arizona metropolitan region

      Danloe, John; Labadie, Philippe-Luis; Psillas, Jen; Lukinbeal, Chris (The University of Arizona., 2016-12-18)
      This project demonstrates the usefulness of using remotely sensed imagery in conjunction with GIS for urban studies. Utilizing 1-meter high-resolution imagery and GIS, this project provides land-cover change statistics and spatial variables describing new urban development. Statistics of land-cover change were used to quantify the amount of new urban development in acreage. The project then employed a global logistic regression to determine the significant topographic variables influencing the new urban development. The project focused on urban growth from 1998 to 2010 for the Greater Tucson Metropolitan Region. These methods provide accurate and useful information for quantifying urban growth.
    • Opioid Treatment Accessibility in Maricopa County, Arizona: A Network Analysis of Certified Opioid Treatment Programs and Buprenorphine Providers

      Sanchez-Trigueros, Fernando; Jacobs, Amanda (The University of Arizona., 2020-05)
      The United States opioid epidemic has been at the forefront of national response efforts. Despite tightening regulations on opioid prescribing, opioid addiction continues to be problematic. This study was designed to analyze opioid treatment accessibility in Maricopa County, Arizona, one of the most populous counties in the U.S. Based on data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 656 buprenorphine providers and 182 certified opioid treatment center locations in Maricopa County were incorporated to evaluate for treatment accessibility. Using GIS network analyst tools, distance to the closest treatment location was determined for each Maricopa County census tract. To further visualize accessibility, 2.5, 5, and 10-mile service areas were also located. The analysis demonstrated route distances increased moving outwards from the urban city areas of Maricopa County. Likewise, service areas also tended to branch outward from the urban city core. Spatially, rural areas are disproportionately impacted with regards to opioid treatment accessibility and populations living in these areas are at higher risk for encountering barriers to opioid treatment. These findings provide key information that may assist in population health outreach services and potentially useful data for public health policy efforts aimed at improving access to opioid addiction treatment.
    • Recent Violent Crime Dynamics and Spatial Patterns in Albuquerque, New Mexico

      Sanchez-Trigueros, Fernando; Schiffer, Dustin (The University of Arizona., 2019-12)
      This project is an analysis of violent crime in the City of Albuquerque, New Mexico. In 2014, the DOJ opened an investigation into the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) which resulted in APD’s officer numbers dwindling, and making the officers that stay afraid to use their entire tool and skill set. This project uses raw data retrieved directly from APDs API to detect historical and geospatial patterns in Albuquerque crime data. It also uses complimentary data sets such as current station placement, and school locations. Using a Pareto (80/20) analysis, violent crimes were clustered together for an analysis on incident counts within a quarter mile of schools, and how far away the higher incident count buffers are from current stations. Space-Time (time-cube) analysis was applied with violent crime dates to identify areas that may be experiencing new patterns. The results were compared to the overall data that has been touted by the current city administration. This administration has claimed that crime numbers are going down. The results in this project, however, contradict these claims. The workflow and results described in this report will help identify areas that may require more extensive attention from law enforcement agencies in Albuquerque.