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(Stranger )
05/02/11 02:54 PM
Map Annotations new Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

I am really hoping for any and all help/feedback. Brand new to GISCAFE. Been a user for 15 years now. Running into a problem with map labeling/annotations.

Background - I need to create a map titled "State of Alabama Traffic Flow Map"

1) The higher-ups did not want GIS and they are set in their ways to the point of irrationality. But I digress.

2) That being said, the map needs to show the entire state of Alabama, with approximately 25 insets for the more populous areas. The map ITSELF is fairly simple - it simply needs to show roads, County Boundaries, State Boundary, all the highway routes (both state and federal and, in the insets, road names where applicable).

3) The size of the map (this cannot be altered in any way - remember the "sticklers" mentioned above) is 3 feet in height and 2 and a half feet in length.

4) They do NOT want a finite scale (yes, you read that correctly). They do have an approximate scale for the overall state map, but not for any insets.

5) THE FOCUS OF THE MAP IS THE TRAFFIC FLOW DENSITIES. They refuse to use any color coded scheme. They simply want "masks" around the roads that adjust in width proportional to the number of cars that travel on route segments. As you can imagine, Interstate routes near main cities such as Montgomery, Tuscaloosa, Mobile, Birmginham and Hustville have the "thickest" masks (shades in width - hopefully I am describing this accurately enough!).

Here are my problems:

1. Labeling the Shield for the State Highways and Federal Highways is nearly impossible due to the numbers that are located all over the map and insets showing the approximate numbers of travel flow density (i.e 10,320 or 31,870, etc for route segments).

2. I am brand new here and inherited this project from someone who simply up and quit and left no procedural instructions - nothing.

3. When I try to annotate or label the route segments, it becomes so unbelieably cluttered - to the point of incessant overlap - but I need to have these numbers displayed for each route segment.

So - any and all help is so very appreciated.

I have been rattling on and on with different ideas but have been unable to come up with anything that the higher-ups like. They refuse to acccept a gradual scale colorized theme of any sort. I almost feel like producing the map in Autocad, but am unsure.

Please help!

I have access to 4 highly skilled programmers - excellent. But they need instructions as to what to code in order to make the labels legible, etc.



(Stranger )
05/04/11 09:14 AM
Re: Map Annotations [re: benmoyer13]Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply


It sounds like you want to "buffer" the highways/roads.  If you can get your hands on ESRI's Map Book, vol 24 and vol 25, there are some examples of what I think you want your output to look like.  In vol 24, see page 103.  In vol 25, see page 32.  I call ESRI's Map Books my "idea" books.

You might have to take a liberal interpretation of what needs to be presented.  I do understand the constraints you're under.

If you don't have access to ESRI's Map Books, send me an email and I'll send you a pdf of what I'm describing.


Edited by AvgJoe on 05/04/11 09:15 AM.

(Stranger )
05/04/11 12:08 PM
Re: Map Annotations new [re: AvgJoe]Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

Thank You, AvgJoe.

I do not currently have a copy of the book you are referring to.

I would greatly appreciate you sending me a PDF - my email address is

Yes, it seems as though a buffer (with traffic density being displayed as thicker and thicker bands of the buffer) where traffic counts are highest would be the ideal way to go.

I unfortuntately just started this position last Tuesday (Monday being "Confederate Memorial Day") and this map was once a sole person's job here at the Alabama DOT. Literally, this worker who is long retired spent his entire career here simply working on this map, which is updated every 2 years, always on an even year.

However, the last person (and the person from whom I inherited this project) simply up and quit (after a very short stint) without leaving so much as a note to what procedures he was following. I have been told time and time again that the higher-ups do not want ANY color on the maps - do not want to utilize any of GIS's powers. The previous maps were all created in AutoCad or Geomedia. They basically are asking me to create the exact same map which was last produced in 2008 - only with new traffic counts for each segment of each road for the entire state of Alabama. EACH route segment must contain a labeled number for traffic count - i.e. 10,250 for segement 11 on Interstate 65. The clutter of the map is unbelievable. There is no legend - the projection they are using is:

Projection: Transverse_Mercator
False_Easting: 500000.000000
False_Northing: 0.000000
Central_Meridian: -87.000000
Scale_Factor: 0.999600
Latitude_Of_Origin: 0.000000
Linear Unit: Meter

Datum: D_WGS_1984

I told my superiors that we should be using State Plane and using the 2 for Alabama (East and West, respectively) - however - again, they do not want this!

Thank you so very much for taking the time to reply and I will definitely keep a lookout for your PDF in my email's inbox!


(Stranger )
05/05/11 07:45 AM
Re: Map Annotations new [re: AvgJoe]Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

Received your PDFs in my email - a million thanks!



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