Building my 1st ArcGIS Database

I am getting ready to start a major database construction project for my office’s first geographic information system.

Here is the task I have been given:

My company has been in business since 1984. We have been providing geotechnical and environmental engineering services in north Texas all these years. A standard type project consists of drilling boreholes, preparing borehole logs of the geology, and issueing a report. We’re estimating that our files from the past 20+ years contain information on as many as 12,000 boreholes ! This information was gathered, often as a high dollar item to clients, packaged as a report, and then buried in a file cabinet to collect dust.

It’s a no brainer that having ready access to this information would be a very valuable resource. Not only might it prevent us from having to drill the occasional borehole only to duplicate information slumbering in our file cabinets, but it will also assist in making intelligent decisions and educated guesses where future holes have to be drilled in close proximity to holes drilled in the past. We will be able to glean more detailed information than standard geologic maps provide and hope to be able to estimate project length and cost based on anticipated geology when we prepare proposals.

So, here we go. I will have to start pulling files. Most likely I will start with a large spreadsheet that contains data such as project number, location (City, County, Road, etc.), most importantly though – geographic coordinates. Exact location details will be the backbone to our database. When this is done or as progress is made, I will start importing the data into ArcGIS and start making it queryable in map and database form.

Sound like a project ? I am looking forward to it.

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