An Urban GIS Database Model for Integrated Land and Building Property Management

Article excerpt


Since the introduction of Geographic information Systems (GIS) in South Korea in the early 1980s, GIS have been widely used for effective facility and land resource management. Specifically, an extensive GIS implementation strategy was initiated by the National GIS committee with a two-stage plan: GIS database development (1996-2000) and a consumer-oriented database and application development (from 2001). The first stage can be characterized by the development of large-scale vector base maps along with the development of facility and utility maps. GIS implementation for the city of Seoul has been extensively researched since the early 1990s. Focusing on the facility management systems, 1:500 and 1:1,000-scale base-map databases have been developed following guidelines described by National Orders and Bylaws regarding digital mapping. Because the guidelines are based on a hierarchical structure of spatial features, it is necessary to provide semantic relationships among features for developing information-ri ch application databases. Using the land parcel and building themes, conceptual and logical database models were designed. Three entities and six relationships were identified. After analyzing their relations, a logical database model was designed by converting entities, relationships, and set attributes into objects.


The growth of the city of Seoul, South Korea, has caused an increased demand for land resources and complexity of land uses. Under limited land resources, issues regarding effective land use planning and decision making have been major concerns to city governors, planners, administrators, and citizens. Inefficient and incomprehensive management of natural resources, ground and underground facilities, land cadastre data, and urban planning workflow may bring untimely decision-making thus making it difficult to manage the ever changing urban environment efficiently. This would decrease the quality of urban spaces and accrete unnecessary costs such as increasing traffic time and unwelcome public policies.

For the effective management of complex urban systems and the improvement of the quality of public services, geographic information systems (GIS) have been introduced beginning in the early 1980s by many local governments in South Korea such as Seoul, KwangJu, TaeKu, SeongNam, KwaChon, and InChon. Because of the complexity of urban facilities, most urban GIS implementations in South Korea have focused on the effective management of urban infrastructures such as power and communication cables, water, sewage, gas, roads, buildings, and land parcels at a very high accuracy level.

Many GIS projects, however, revealed several unexpected problems, specifically in creating very large-scale base-maps where urban facilities would be drawn. Even though there are land parcel maps at 1:600, 1:1,200, and 1:3,000 scales used in South Korea, many GIS projects created very large-scale base-maps (1:500 and 1:1,000 scales) from stereo plotting aerial photos because the projection used for the land parcel maps is obsolete and the land parcel maps keep ownership and planning-related features more accurately compared to less accurate topographic and cultural features. Even though some prototype systems were developed using 1:5,000-scale base maps, which are the largest-scale map among national topographic map series, a general consensus was to develop large-scale digital base-maps from scratch. This responsibility was assigned to the National GIS (NGIS) Initiative started in 1995. According to the initiative, most urban areas would be mapped at least to the scale of 1:1,000. Under the NGIS plan, large -scale base-maps have been developed at three scales, 1:1,000, 1:5,000, and 1:25,000 since 1996, and the base-map construction was scheduled to be finished by the year 2000.

With most GIS efforts occupied by the construction of large-scale base-maps, there has been little research on how to design application data models using the base-maps and other data sets. …