2021 SAG Award Winners

City of Morgantown

Project Goal

The Morgantown Ward and Boundary Commission is required to maintain the balance of all seven city wards in population and the number of registered voters, typically through biennial analyses of the wards. The analysis had been undertaken by various means in the past, but this project was the first time GIS was utilized in analysis, participation by officials, and reporting the Commission's final product. GIS was able to provide a map of the City's wards that were much more balanced under both criteria, while also preserving existing neighborhood and natural boundaries as much as possible.
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Business Problem Solved

The problem was the city's wards were not balanced in population or count of registered voters, with some wards being as much as 40% above or under the mean of all seven wards. The previous attempts to achieve this balance did not produce adequate results and the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in budgetary restrictions that prevented the City from being able to utilize an independent contractor to provide the analysis, so the Commission requested the assistance of the City's GIS Analyst to use existing tools available in the City's software licensing. The GIS Analyst primarily utilized the Territory Design tool in Business Analyst, and provided multiple iterations of the tool's output to the Ward and Boundary Commission. The Commission ultimately approved a much more balanced ward map that focused on natural boundaries while avoiding dissecting the City's major neighborhoods.

Technology Implemented

The following ESRI products were used for this project:
- ArcGIS Pro
- ArcGIS Business Analyst Desktop
- Territory Design Tool in Business Analyst
- Data Enrichment Ready-to-Use Tool
- ArcGIS Online
- ArcGIS Story Maps

Development Team Biography

Marvin A. Davis - GIS Analyst, City of Morgantown - Marvin began the implementation of GIS for the City in fall 2019 and has aided the City's Development Services, Engineering and Public Works, and Urban Landscapes departments in incorporating GIS into their daily workflows. He was tasked with aiding the Ward and Boundary Commission's work in 2020. He has worked in local government providing GIS services for over six years and holds a Bachelor's Degree in History and Geography and a Master's Degree in Geography from West Virginia University.