• 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.
    • Changes at the Great Sand Dunes National Park

      Mason, Jennifer; Grogan, Andrew; Wade, Joseph (The University of Arizona., 2022-05-05)
      Sand Dune Geomorphology occurs much faster than most geological processes, and is heavily influenced by the small scale weather events and current climatology. Aeolian forces can be difficult to study directly, but they directly affect areas with large amounts of free sediment not restricted by vegetation. The Great Sand Dunes National Park was upgraded from a national monument in 2000, but the dunes themselves are thought to have formed as recently as 18,000 – 400,000 years ago after a large glacial lake receded from the valley. There is even evidence that large amounts of sediment joined the main dunefield 750 years ago due to a severe and prolonged drought. With improvements in technology, it is now possible to look at the dunes with LIDAR, seeing the changes from 2014 to 2021. Using Lidar data, it may be possible to identify possible causes or variables that influenced the changes that occurred to the Great Sand Dunes over the course of 7 years. Large nearby features like the 14,000 foot (4267 meters) Sangre De Cristo Mountains with their effect on the weather, and creating ephemeral streams from snowmelt. This study tests and identifies variables to ascertain whether they influence the dunes, and may help us predict what may happen in the near future, as well as possibly the far future, and the dunes may reveal secrets about how the climate is changing as they are impacted by the climate.

      Mason, Jennifer; Gardner, Nathan (The University of Arizona., 2022-05-02)
      The Northwest Ordinance of 1787 was the beginning of the Public Land Survey System (PLSS) and subdivided the lands of the United States into a rectangular grid system. This grid did not include the 13 original colonies or Texas, but it did cover the remaining current and future lands of the US. In most cases this grid system controls how land is divided regardless of who owns it. While each corner in the PLSS has a unique location and name, there is not a universal system to record and share their monumented locations. Each state and county have been left to decide if they will create a location database and how they would like to achieve that. This project is starting that process for Pima County, Arizona. This was accomplished using a data collection process for both field work and data files, then populating a web map database and displaying that on a dashboard. The dashboard allows viewing and downloads of those points to the public. These are available as tools for those who need to locate PLSS corners for any reason. The locations in this database may not be the most precise and accurate locations or considered “survey” grade. They do give a starting point for anyone needing to find one of these entries, and provide a record, including a timestamp, of what is or was at that location. This information can be used by professionals, the public, and municipalities to increase map accuracy or just find the point.
    • 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.
    • Designing an ArcGIS Survey123 Form to be Used with Field Maps to Conduct Post-Storm Damage Assessments

      Korgaonkar, Yoga; Adams, Matt (The University of Arizona., 2022-04-27)
      Hurricanes are an annual risk to most counties in Florida, and Flagler County is no exception. A critical aspect of post-hurricane response is conducting a preliminary damage assessment in order to gain access to Federal Emergency Management Agency funds. In the past, Flagler County has relied on outside consultants in order to complete the calculations on the back end of the preliminary damage assessment. This study aims to design a preliminary damage assessment solution that is managed completely in-house in order to mitigate the reliance on a consulting firm in the time of a disaster. This solution consists of a Field Map for assessors to utilize in the field, a Survey123 form for completing the damage assessment in the field, Dashboards to monitor the progress of the damage assessment, and reports to be utilized by incident command and other stakeholders. The Survey123 form includes additional calculations for estimating the damage cost, amount of structural debris, and amount of vegetative debris. This set of Damage Assessment tools helps to decrease dependence on outside consultants, saves Flagler County money on consulting fees, and ensures that the tools are be ready to use when a disaster strikes.

      Mason, Jennifer; Morris, Jacob (The University of Arizona., 2022-05-02)
      Locating and identification of plant stress and diseases plays a major role in plant conservation and human safety concerns relating to falling hazards and reduction in fire blocks between structures in medium sized population centers. Overall flora heath can be indicated by visual observations of the chlorophyll and other pigments in the leaves. As outside interference with the plants ability to naturally produce the required nutrients, such as environmental and pathological interference, the visible pigmentation change. In this study, pigment variation is evaluated and analyzed by machine learning methods including image classification for the evaluation of health in deciduous trees. By utilizing multispectral imagery this study compares wavelength values for identified affected individuals showing visual symptoms to located other affected individuals both showing symptomatic and non-symptomatic individuals. Data analysis was conducted utilizing a trained supervised classification, support vector machines and K nearest neighbor method to determine which methods was most precise in identifying affected pixels for fast-tracking management evaluations for resource managers. The overall classification accuracy of targeted, healthy, fields, and urban was relatively good, with kappa values ranging from 0.66 to 0.75 and overall accuracy ranging from 70%to 83%. Support vector machines accuracy of 82.13% with a kappa coefficient of 0.74 at a 750 point accuracy assessment making it the best method of the two for detections of symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals.
    • Determining Opportunity: The Need for Forming a Families Opportunity Index

      Sanchez Trigueros, Fernando; Johnson, Erika (The University of Arizona., 2021-08-14)
      The relationship between families and communities are apparent in the opportunity available to the family unit. How a family fares in a community can have lasting effects, both generational and to the community that they are a part of. Measuring opportunity through an index is best practice because of its multi-dimensional aspect, however, no index exists when evaluating the opportunity of families. The nearest index to providing some indication is the Opportunity Index, but it also fails to capture the complexities that families contend with. Using the framework from the Opportunity Index, along with adding other markers of family opportunity based on research, a Families Opportunity Index was created to better quantify the opportunity of families for the counties of California. The new Families Opportunity Index includes added indicators for the Economy Dimension of the Index. By modifying the Economy Dimension to focus on data that would capture indicators that effect the most vulnerable of families, single parent families, and recently separated or divorced families, we can capture a more realistic picture of a family’s opportunity for each California county. The expectation is that the Families Opportunity Index will be used to inform better public policy for Families.
    • 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.

      Sanchez-Trigueros, Fernando; Seay, Laura (The University of Arizona., 2021-08)
      Horse racing in the United States has been around since 1665, but seriously took off after the Civil War in 1868. The sport has always been dangerous, with most of those dangers being manmade. One of the most widely discussed aspects is administering drugs to the racehorses. While drugs may play a part in the number of injuries sustained by the horses, the questions being asked in this project focus on the natural environment surrounding the racing rather than the artificial environment created by man. Does geographic location and climate play a role in horse track fatalities? Data, including number of races per month and fatalities per year, was collected along with specific climate data for each racetrack location from Jan 2009 through December 2020. The data was analyzed using regression testing. Racetrack locations on the west coast were compared to their east coast counterparts. Northern tracks were compared to southern tracks. Through all comparisons, there does not appear to be a strong connection between the geographic locations of the racetracks and the fatalities reported each year. More detailed analysis to determine that correlation is needed.
    • 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.
    • Finding The Tongva

      Korgaonkar, Yoga; Gonzales, Alexander (The University of Arizona., 2022-05-01)
      Finding The Tongva is focused on Locating sites of Tongva influence throughout the county of Los Angeles. The county area was once the homeland of the Tongva Tribe who once had approximately 100 villages throughout Southern California. The Tongva tribe is not well known because the tribe does not have any reservations and most of the land is covered by urban and suburban construction. This project is focused on finding sites of significant Tongva influence to share with the public. The first part of the project was to find various websites that can provide locations and addresses to be converted into point features. These point features are separated into feature layers based on their attributes: Museums, People, Arts, and Monuments. The results show that there are around 100 places of Tongva sites including arts, monuments, museums, and organizations that are dedicated to preserving Tongva culture. The map also includes polygon features such as county boundaries and survey areas to show scale and general area. These results are then uploaded to ArcGIS Online to create a Web Application. This Web Application allows the public to visualize the data and allows for easy user interaction. The widgets allow the public to locate, modify, print, and search for routes on the map. The goal of this project is to preserve the Tongva’s history and to teach the public about the tribe’s value as a culture.
    • Flood Risk Assessment of the Greater St George, Utah Area Based on Land Cover/Land Use and Watersheds

      Sánchez-Trigueros, Fernando; Moertle-Litson, Jasmine (The University of Arizona., 2021-08)
      The Greater St George area in Southern Utah is a hot spot for development. The gradual increase in population size has caused a large growth in construction. In 2018, a large storm hit the area and caused massive flooding in Washington, Utah. This was caused by new construction blocking a natural floodplain. This caused a diversion of the waters into the people’s homes below. The point of this project is to identify the changes in the land from the year of 2008 to 2018 along with displaying the natural water passages in the area. The areas that are overlapped with the flood zones that have been developed on, are at a potential risk of dealing with major flood damage. Using the unsupervised and supervised classification systems on ArcMap along with a watershed analysis, the flood hazard zones information will be displayed within the area. The unsupervised and supervised data signifies that the major flood zones are now encountering more developed areas. This indicates that if more work isn’t done to prevent flooding, then more homes are susceptible to damage. Census data also indicates the communities with the most flooding risk are the low income and high minority communities. The impact of developing the area to support the growing population is ultimately having to cost the city and the citizens more money. The developers need to make sure they examine the natural water ways and avoid causing more flood damage to the city.
    • The Florida Panther: Challenges to Keep This Endangered Species Moving Forward

      Korgaonkar, Yoga; Munoz, Milton (The University of Arizona., 2021-12-13)
      The endangered Florida panther (puma concolor coryi) continues to face challenges for expansion in the southern part of Florida. For decades, the Florida panther existence has been threatened by several factors such as genetic neurological conditions, and habitat displacement. With the rapidly growing population of Southwest Florida, the biggest danger for survival for the Florida panther today is habitat loss, and the proximity to busy roads and highways. The goal of this project is to display current Florida panther geographical range, areas with high indexes of vehicular mortality, and areas suitable for potential growth. Several datasets were obtained and manipulated to produce maps showing panther radio-collared telemetry readings, mortality records, and Florida land use over the years. A similar assessment was done to the Florida black bear, a species facing similar habitat issues in the Southwest Florida region. A habitat suitability model was done to measure potential areas for recovery after decades of extinction danger. Habitat suitability models are essential in the planning and development of wildlife corridors. The findings of this study could be used for Florida panther conservation projects, and wildlife protecting plans to maintain areas suitable for wildlife proliferation.
    • Geologic Map of Arizona

      Korgaonkar, Yoga; Camp, Michael (The University of Arizona., 2022-04)
      The mission of the Arizona Geological Survey is to provide geologic information to enhance public understanding of the state's geologic character, geologic hazards and limitations, and mineral resources. The maps published by the Arizona Geologic Survey are used by the public and state authorities to assess natural hazards, evaluate construction suitability, and discover mineral and energy resources. The Arizona Geological Survey has been providing geology maps for more than one-hundred years, with its first state-wide geologic map of Arizona published in 1924. The Arizona Geological Survey provides an interactive geologic map of Arizona online, but the website has not been updated in over eight years. The goal of this project is to update the data and software behind the geologic map of Arizona using modern software and software development practices. The final product uses open-source software including Leaflet.js and can be used as a reference for creating future online maps.
    • 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.
    • GIS Analysis of the Bighorn Fire Evacuation Orders

      Korgaonkar, Yoga; Camp, Katrina (The University of Arizona., 2022-05-03)
      The Bighorn Fire of 2020 burned 119,978 acres of the Santa Catalina Mountains and threatened urban interface five days into a forty-nine-day burn. Arizona’s Ready, Set, Go! emergency response evacuation plan was activated to ensure the safety of those residing within the danger zone of the wildfire. Evacuation zones were created specifically for this natural disaster which proved confusing for many residents attempting to determine their location in conjunction with the wildfire. This historical spatial analysis depicts the evacuation orders as they were initiated by the Pima County Office of Emergency Management. For each of the twenty-five Pima County evacuation orders initiated during the Bighorn Fire, ArcGIS Pro was used to map each zone by evacuation order and the correlating evacuation status (Ready, Set, Go!). The evacuation meeting point, as well as the animal sheltering location, have been digitized on each map displaying the distance between the evacuation zones and the meeting points. An ArcGIS StoryMap has been created to narrate the events of the Bighorn Fire. An interactive evacuation map was developed using ArcGIS Web App Builder. Users can enter their address and choose a point on the map to determine the distance, route, and length of time from their house to a safe point outside of the evacuation zones. This project will improve understanding of the events that occurred during this natural disaster and the emergency responses used to ensure the safety of citizens near the urban interface. Additionally, it can be used as a learning tool to improve wildfire evacuation communication with the community as well as community safety education.
    • 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.