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La Plata, MD | Virginia | South Carolina | Washington, DC Automating Quicklook Products for Emergent Events using Python

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Automating Quicklook Products for Emergent Events using Python. La Plata, MD | Virginia | South Carolina | Washington, DC. Overview. Background Reason for Development MXD Staging Python Script ArcGIS Tool. Department of Homeland Security - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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La Plata, MD | Virginia | South Carolina | Washington, DCAutomating Quicklook Products for Emergent Events using Python1BackgroundReason for DevelopmentMXD StagingPython ScriptArcGIS Tool

Overview22Department of Homeland Security National Protective Programs Directorate (NPPD) Office of Infrastructure Protection (IP)

Project Description: Provide geospatial support for the protection of our nations critical infrastructure

Highlights: Cartographic products range in size from Quick Turn individual maps to multi-page map booksMany products are repetitive and are requested many times during an event or projectAnnual events such as College Bowl Games, Marathons, etc.Daily Update Briefs during an ongoing project


34Quicklook BackgroundSnapshot of Developing Situation:Relatively simple map!Depicts incident location and nearby assets

What its for: Used to brief leadership who alert nearby infrastructure stakeholders

As soon as a QL is requested, its needed ASAP

To quickly produce static cartographic products:Primarily for leadership to get a quick idea of the incident/surrounding areasGrew out of a need to produce a pleasing product in less than 20 minutes

To take the Template one step further: Frees up the Geospatial Analyst to add more interesting additional things to the product, rather than focus on mundane repeatable tasks

Reason for Development556I was interested:Literally a self-imposed opportunity to learn on the jobWanted to expand upon my python knowledgeI wanted to save time

Tired of doing it by hand every time: All maps formatted the exact same wayFelt above some of the simple things we needed to do each timePoint creationBufferPan/ZoomReal Reason7MXD StagingReally Useful & Important:Dynamically Updating Date/Time based upon OS timeHas an auto-generating legend based upon what layers are on/in extent

8MXD StagingReally Useful & Important:Contains dummy layers that have all symbology/labeling propertiesTitle, Location, and Distance text boxes all dynamically updated from script


MXD Template10Python ScriptA few things it does:Prompts the user to define the workspaceCreates folders inside that workspace

Gets lat/long from user and generates a point based upon it

11Python ScriptRuns Buffer Tool

Swaps out data sources for layers in TOC

Pan/Zoom Main Data Frame to One Mile Buffer Extent

Reprojects the Main Data Frame to correct UTM Zone

12Python ScriptCalculates distance/direction to nearest assetTurns on and off layers in the TOCPasses title and location info from user

Saves the new map document into the user defined workspace

Launches ArcMap

13ArcGIS ToolUser Friendly:Users input parameters to set values of the variables in the python scriptContains descriptions/help for each parameter so the user knows what to inputOnce the tool runs, it automatically launches the newly generated map for additional editing


ArcGIS ToolUser Interaction:Tool outputs messages to show user which processes its running


Generated MXD

Questions?Useful Links:Blog Post -

Contact Info:Christian [email protected]