City of San Francisco Plots its Urban Forest Using Open Source Mapping Technology

Together with Autodesk and Friends of the Urban Forest, San Francisco

launches Web-based Urban Forest Mapping System for official and public use

Mar 08, 2007, 00:00 ET from Autodesk, Inc.

    SAN RAFAEL, Calif., March 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The City and
 County of San Francisco today announced the development and launch of a
 city-wide, dynamic online map of the city's growing number of trees.
 Autodesk, Inc. (Nasdaq:   ADSK), through the Mayor's Office of City Greening,
 worked together with the City's Bureau of Urban Forestry (BUF) and Friends
 of the Urban Forest (FUF), a local San Francisco non-profit organization,
 to develop this Urban Forest Mapping System, which will serve as a central
 dynamic resource where San Francisco residents, community groups and city
 employees can update and share information about new or existing street
 trees that form part of the city's urban forest.
     Local government agencies, FUF and the community will all see benefits
 from this collaborative mapping effort. The Bureau of Urban Forestry and
 FUF now have a vital, technology-based tool for tree maintenance and
 management, enabling urban forest managers to inventory and map existing,
 future and past tree locations. City officials can also quickly and
 accurately calculate costs and benefits of the urban forest as a whole or
 in specific areas, allowing the city to strategically focus support for
 tree planting and maintenance in certain areas of need. The system will
 also foster greater community involvement and awareness of the urban forest
 - citizens can go online to access tree data, report problems, upload
 personal tree information, such as photos and stories, and add information
 about privately owned trees to the city inventory.
     "The City of San Francisco is dedicated to being one of the greenest
 cities on the planet. This Urban Forest Mapping Project is an exciting
 opportunity for our community to create an online forum to become more
 actively involved in the greening of the city," said San Francisco Mayor
 Gavin Newsom. "Not only will this technology make the city's maintenance
 procedures easier to perform, but our citizens now have a place where they
 can come together to make a difference to the urban landscape."
     BUF and FUF previously managed forest data in separate systems, both
 heavily reliant on paper-based maps, which prevented the organizations from
 easily sharing information. The new Urban Forest Management system
 synchronizes existing data from both groups in a comprehensive database.
 Both groups can now easily access and update the information, thus
 facilitating communications and streamlining previously time-intensive
 workflows. The data from this system is published and maintained via
 Autodesk MapGuide Open Source technology, which Autodesk released into the
 open source community last year.
     "Using a blended model of open source and commercial technologies, we
 were able to create a system that met all our development and operations
 needs," said Greg Braswell, IT and GIS manager of the San Francisco
 Department of Public Works Bureau of Engineering. "Autodesk MapGuide
 Studio's authoring capabilities easily integrate with the Microsoft
 platform, and since city IT workers already use Microsoft, the learning
 curve was minimal. With MapGuide Open Source, we receive an enhanced level
 of collaboration and support for data sources and geocoding from the open
 source development community beyond what commercial vendors offer."
     "Autodesk is excited to be a part of this program that will raise the
 public's awareness of the trees that make the City of San Francisco a green
 city," said Lisa Campbell, Autodesk's vice president of Geospatial
 Solutions. "We hope this project with the city of San Francisco will become
 a model for other cities around the world to manage and preserve their
 urban forests."
     "Part of what makes this project unique and amazing is that three very
 different organizations have come together and created a tool that serves
 to benefit the entire community - a rare situation," says Amber Bieg,
 development officer for FUF. "Not very often do a non-profit organization,
 a government agency and a private corporation partner to create a tool for
 the community."
     The San Francisco Urban Forest Mapping Project is located at For more information, visit
     About Friends of the Urban Forest
     Friends of the Urban Forest (FUF) is a non-profit organization
 committed to the belief that trees are a critical element of a livable
 urban environment. Since 1981, FUF has offered financial, technical, and
 practical assistance to individuals and neighborhood groups who want to
 plant and care for trees.
     About the City & County of San Francisco, Department of Public Works
     The Department of Public Works provides services ranging from cleaning,
 repairing and maintaining city streets and sewers to greening the city's
 landscape, to designing and managing construction of public facilities.
     About the City & County of San Francisco, Mayor's Office of City
     The Mayor's Office of City Greening leads San Francisco's efforts in
 the physical greening of the public realm. The Greening Office, a component
 of the Mayor's Livable City Initiative, focuses on the quality of our
 streets, sidewalks, parks and plazas. With more than one-quarter of the
 City's total land devoted to public rights-of-way, greening plans and
 projects offer unique opportunities to improve the lives of all San
     About Autodesk
     Autodesk, Inc. is the world leader in 2D and 3D design software for the
 manufacturing, building and construction, and media and entertainment
 markets. Since its introduction of AutoCAD in 1982, Autodesk has developed
 the broadest portfolio of state-of-the-art digital prototyping solutions to
 help customers experience their ideas before they are real. Fortune 1000
 companies rely on Autodesk for the tools to visualize, simulate and analyze
 real-world performance early in the design process to save time and money,
 enhance quality and foster innovation. For additional information about
 Autodesk, visit
     NOTE: Autodesk and Autodesk MapGuide are registered trademarks or
 trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., in the USA and/or other countries. All other
 brand names, product names or trademarks belong to their respective
 holders. Autodesk reserves the right to alter product offerings and
 specifications at any time without notice, and is not responsible for
 typographical or graphical errors that may appear in this document.

SOURCE Autodesk, Inc.