2021 SAG Award Winners

PLPCO

Project Goal

Revised Statute 2477 (Mining Act of 1866) is a federal law that authorized construction of roads across public lands. This law helped settle the West. Congress repealed R.S. 2477 in 1976, and enacted the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), preserving all R.S. 2477 rights-of-way. Today, the state and counties have to rely on R.S. 2477 to establish ownership of routes that have been used continuously for ten years prior to 1976.

In 2012, the Utah Attorney General’s Office filed lawsuits relating to R.S. 2477. The goal is to (1) confirm the State and counties as owners of the R.S. 2477, (2) to allow counties to make local decisions about route maintenance, (3) to ensure public access to federal public lands for recreation, personal enjoyment, and any other purpose, and (4) to preserve local transportation network for the local economy. Goal of the GIS team was to enhance workflows further with commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) functionality to increase staff efficiency.
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Business Problem Solved

Utah must submit proof of public use of each claimed RS2477. PLPCO’s GIS team assists the Utah Attorney General’s Office in RS2477 litigation by providing research and support. Early on PLPCO staff identified a need for a way to manage all 12,500 RS2477s. Along with all the historical maps, data and evidence that’s part of building a litigation strategy, we soon realized that the state needed a way for attorneys and judges to do site visits on all the roads. We turned to GIS for a solution.
Using 360 Degree Video and GPS technology we are able to create a fully immersive site visit that is completely virtual. In 2020, this platform was successfully demonstrated as evidence in the federal court during the Bellwether trial. The success of this program led our team to develop a public facing application called Access Map 360°.
Access Map 360° is an online WebGIS platform that gives the viewer a unique way to explore Utah’s public lands.

Technology Implemented

Foundation is built on ArcEnterpise deployed on local servers
We collaborate with other state Agencies through ArcGIS Online
GIS analysts use ArcPro
Field Operations team uses Collector, Survey123 and now Field Maps.
Staff use configuurable Web Map Applications to make better informed decisions and review data.
Management uses Dashboards to monitor our performance Metrics.

Development Team Biography

The primary goal of the PLPCO’s GIS team is to provide staff with data-driven information to help facilitate the most informed decisions possible. We advance our agencies mission and work by broadening the presence of our web GIS to state agencies and the public through visualized real-time data in the form of maps and web-applications. We believe when GIS is coupled with sound science, data is converted into information that is used to drive litigation efforts, guide policy recommendations, and inform. We provide unique solutions to problems involving public land policy and litigation.
We thank ESRI, the Utah Geographic Reference Center and all the Utah counties that helped our team build a stronger GIS.