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Land Use - January 2002

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OVERVIEW

The MassGIS Land Use datalayer has 37 land use classifications interpreted from 1:25,000 aerial photography. Coverage is complete statewide for 1971, 1985, and 1999. Additionally, more than half the state was interpreted from aerial photography flown during 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995 or 1997. The 15 towns on Cape Cod also contain land use data for 1951. Please see the Land Use Status Map, which displays the years for which land use data were interpreted for each town. This datalayer is stored in the TOWN library; the layer is named LANDUSE and the individual community coverages are named LUS. In ArcSDE the layer is named LANDUSE_POLY.

The year of most recent photography used for land use data interpretation is stored in a single statewide coverage called LUSTAT. This layer was necessitated because some towns contain partial coverage for a certain year, which eliminated the one-to-one link between town-ID and year.

NEW: MassGIS has produced Land Use Summary Statistics, by municipality, for all three years for which land use is available statewide. These tables summarize acreages for each land use type by year, as well as land use change from 1971 to 1985 and 1985 to 1999.

PRODUCTION
Photointerpretation and automation were done by the Resource Mapping Project at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. The RMP staff aggregated the 104 classes of their original 1971 interpretation into 21 categories and digitized the data into individual community digital coverages using a PC version of Arc/INFO software. The RMP staff then visually compared the 1971 photography and 1985 photography and produced a digital map of only 1971-85 change for each community. Interpretation was made from 1:40,000 9"x 9" color infrared photos flown in Summer 1985. Southeastern Mass was flown in September 1984. The flight and photography were funded by the Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Management for another project. Several additional categories of land use were added for parts of Massachusetts. Ten communities in the Southeastern Regional Planning & Economic Development District (SRPEDD) west of Buzzards Bay plus Bourne and Falmouth have a total of 28 land use classes. The 28 classes include the original 21 categories plus 23,24,25,26,27,28 and 29 (see Code Definitions below).

In 1990, the Cape Cod Commission funded an update of Cape Cod. These data are categorized into 26 land use classifications, expanding the original codes to include 23,26,29 and 30. These additional codes, along with the original 21, are listed in LU37_CODE. The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) funded land use interpretation in 1991 for 14 towns. The 33 code scheme for this update includes codes 23,24,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36 and 37 in addition to the original 21 codes. The Executive Office of Transportation and Construction (EOTC) also funded a 1991 update for 113 towns using the same set of codes as the MWRA except for code 37. The UMass RMP staff updated some other towns not included in the 1990-1991 update based on digital orthophotography flown during 1992, 1995, and 1997. The towns that have been updated between 1985 and 1999 are listed below. The minimum mapping unit used was one acre.

Each land use coverage was plotted at a scale of 1:25,000 by the RMP before delivery to MassGIS. MassGIS used a workstation version of Arc/INFO to combine data from different years. Each coverage, therefore, may contain many small polygons that may have been one land use type in, say, 1971. Over the years the land may have been split up for different uses, and the linework in the coverage reflects the land use boundaries for all these uses during the many years of interpretation. Because MassGIS maintains only one coverage per town, the most recent land use code (for 1999) is stored in the polygon's attribute table and the older codes are stored in a "polygon history table". The process of combining the data from different years created some 'sliver polygons'. These result when a theoretically coterminous line in each coverage is actually offset due to it having been digitized twice, e.g. the shore of a lake. Many of these slivers were eliminated by screening for an area/perimeter ratio beyond normal limits.

NOTE: This project was funded by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs (EOEA), the Executive Office of Transportation and Construction, Massachusetts Water Resources Authority and several regional planning agencies. Photointerpretation and digitizing were completed by the UMASS-Amherst Department of Forestry Resource Mapping Project (RMP).

In 1999, EOEA funded the acquisition of statewide 1:25,000 aerial color infrared photography for use in the latest round of land use interpretation. Again, photointerpretation and digitizing were completed by the UMASS Department of Forestry Resource Mapping Project. As part of the 1999 update RMP staff also removed slivers generated in earlier updates, fine-tuned edgematching between towns, and reinterpreted some historical land use codes.

ATTRIBUTES
Each coverage's Polygon Attribute Table (LUS.PAT) contains codes for 1999 land use for each town. Attributes include:
 
TILE-NAME   Town-ID
LU_ID Unique polygon ID for the town
LU21_CODE 21 category landuse code for 1999
LU37_CODE 37 category landuse code for 1999
YEAR Date of most recent data (1999 for all polygons)
RELATE-ID A redefined item combining the TILE-NAME and LU_ID items. This item uniquely identifies each polygon within the state.

For older land use codes (1951-1997, where interpreted), see the section Historical Land Use.

The polygon attribute table for the LUSTAT coverage contains the following items:
 
TOWN-ID   Town-ID (1 - 351)
TOWN Town name
ISLAND 1 = Island polygon (a coastal water area sealed off from the ocean)
SRC_CODE Code of organization that funded a pre-1999 data update (EOTC, MWRA, Cape Cod Commission)
LUYEAR Date of most recent data (all currently are 1999)
LU_YR_PREV Date of most recent previous data
UPDATE1999 "Y" if updated to 1999 data, "N" if an older date (all are now coded "Y")
UPDATE1951 "Y" if 1951 data are available (only the 15 Cape Cod towns), "N" if an older date
LUSTAT_LEG Legend text for intermediate updates (other than 1971, 85, or 99)

LAND USE CODE DEFINITIONS
The two land use code items (LU21_CODE and LU37_CODE) in the polygon attribute and history tables represent two classifications of land use. The 21 category classification aggregates the categories in the 37 category classification as follows:
CODE   ABBREV   CATEGORY   DEFINITION
1 AC Cropland Intensive agriculture
2 AP Pasture Extensive agriculture
3 F Forest Forest
4 FW Wetland Nonforested freshwater wetland
5 M Mining Sand; gravel & rock
6 O Open Land Abandoned agriculture; power lines; areas of no vegetation
7 RP Participation Recreation Golf; tennis; Playgrounds; skiing
8 RS Spectator Recreation Stadiums; racetracks; Fairgrounds; drive-ins
9 RW Water Based Recreation Beaches; marinas; Swimming pools
10 R0 Residential Multi-family
11 R1 Residential Smaller than 1/4 acre lots
12 R2 Residential 1/4 - 1/2 acre lots
13 R3 Residential Larger than 1/2 acre lots
14 SW Salt Wetland Salt marsh
15 UC Commercial General urban; shopping center
16 UI Industrial Light & heavy industry
17 UO Urban Open Parks; cemeteries; public & institutional greenspace; also vacant undeveloped land
18 UT Transportation Airports; docks; divided highway; freight; storage; railroads
19 UW Waste Disposal Landfills; sewage lagoons
20 W Water Fresh water; coastal embayment
21 WP Woody Perennial Orchard; nursery; cranberry bog
22 - No Change Code used by MassGIS only during quality checking
The additional categories in LU37_CODE are:
CODE   ABBREV   CATEGORY
23 CB Cranberry bog (part of #21)
24 PL Powerlines (part of #6)
25 RSB Salwater sandy beach (part of #9; no longer used)
26 RG Golf (part of #7)
27 TSM Tidal salt marshes (part of #14; no longer used)
28 ISM Irregulary flooded salt marshes (part of #14; no longer used)
29 RM Marina (part of #9)
30 - New ocean (areas of accretion; part of #20)
31 UP Urban public (part of #17)
32 TF Transportation facilities (part of #18)
33 H Heath (part of #17)
34 CM Cemeteries (part of #17)
35 OR Orchard (part of #21)
36 N Nursery (part of #21)
37 - Forested wetland (part of #3; no longer used)
All land use categories were aggregated from 104 categories originally defined in 1971. Further information on them can be obtained from Professor William MacConnell at the Dept. of Forestry, University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
HISTORICAL LAND USE
To store the older land use codes, a related "Polygon History table" (LUS.PHS) contains the land use for all available years for each polygon. Each town coverage has its own .PHS table (stored in the town tile workspace if you are using coverage data in Librarian format), which relates to its town's .PAT on the redefined item RELATE-ID (a unique id comprising TILE-NAME and LU_ID). A statewide version of the LUS.PHS table is also maintained and is stored in the Town library's 'database' workspace. When distributing data as export files, the LUS<town-id>.PHS is included in the .e00 file. Shapefile .exe files contain the town-based .PHS table named lus<town-id>ph.dbf.

The LUS.PHS table contains the following items:
 
AREA   In square meters
PERIMETER In meters
TILE-NAME Town-ID
LU_ID Unique polygon ID for the town
LU21_CODE 21 category landuse code (for YEAR)
LU37_CODE 37 category landuse code (for YEAR); Code will be same as LU21_CODE for pre-1990 data (except 10 SRPEDD towns for 1985, as noted above).
YEAR Date of historical data (Year of photography used in land use compilation - 1951, 1971, 1985, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1997, 1999)
RELATE-ID A redefined item combining the TILE-NAME and LU_ID items. This item uniquely identifies each polygon within the state. In shapefile versions of the .PHS files this item is named RELATE_ID and is not redefined.

Using the .PHS Tables

Here is an example of how to join a coverage .PAT to the .PHS table to determine historical land use, using  town #105 (Georgetown) as an example. In the LUS.PAT we find this record (polygon 355, indicated by the LU_ID item):
 
TILE-NAME   LU_ID   LU37_CODE    LU21_CODE   YEAR   RELATE-ID
105 355 32 18 1999 105       355

The RELATE-ID (highlighted in yellow) is this polygon's unique record within the state. Since land use data for Georgetown has been interpreted during four years, there are four records for each polygon in the LUS.PHS table - one for each year for which land use has been recorded (1971, 1985, 1991, and 1999). Using the RELATE-ID as our common field we can relate to the LUS.PHS table, where we find these four corresponding records:
 
TILE-NAME   LU_ID   LU37_CODE    LU21_CODE   YEAR   RELATE-ID
105 355 3 3 1971 105       355
105 355 2 2 1985 105       355
105 355 32 18 1991 105       355
105 355 32 18 1999 105       355

Once this relate is established, you may determine the landuse codes for this polygon for 1971, 1985, and 1991. In the example above, polygon 355 was coded 3 (forest) in 1971, 2 (pasture) in 1985, and 18 (transportation) in 1991. Also found here are the codes for 1999, which match the codes in the .PAT. Because the 37 classification codes are available only for post-1985 landuse data, the more specific code 32 (transportation facility) is used for the LU_37 item, whereas 18 (transportation) is used for LU21_CODE in the record where YEAR = 1991. Accordingly, the records for 1971 and 1985 show no difference between LU37_CODE and LU21_CODE within each year.

Important notes when joining to the historical land use tables:
 - When using the .PHS table in workstation ArcInfo (e.g. ArcPlot), use the RESELECT command to select a particular YEAR prior to establishing a relate.
 - In ArcGIS 8x, ArcView 3x, or other GIS software, users may need to select the .PHS records for a particular year, export the selected records to a new table, alter column names, and then join the polygons to the subset of the .PHS. This is to ensure that joined fields and polygon attribute table fields will have unique, distinguishable names, since both the .PAT and the .PHS use the same field names (LU21_CODE and LU37_CODE) to store land use codes.

Download the Statewide history table (self-extracting .exe file, 3.2 megabytes - once downloaded, double-click on the file in Windows Explorer to extract the lusphs.dbf file). As mentioned above, individual town-based history tables are included in each town's export file or shapefile .exe file, available from the Land Use Download page.

UPDATED LAND USE
All towns have been updated to include 1999 land use codes by UMass-Amherst.

The following towns have been updated by UMass-Amherst using orthophotography flown during the years listed in parentheses:
 
ADAMS(1997)
ASHBURNHAM (1997)
ASHBY (1997)
ASHFIELD (1997)
ATHOL (1997)
BERNARDSTON (1997)
BUCKLAND (1995)
CHARLEMONT (1997)
COLRAIN (1997)
CONWAY (1997)
DEERFIELD (1997)
ERVING (1997)
  FLORIDA(1997)
GARDNER (1997)
GILL (1997)
GOSHEN (1997)
GRANBY (1997)
GREENFIELD (1997)
HADLEY (1997)
HATFIELD (1997)
HAWLEY (1997)
HEATH (1997)
HUBBARDSTON (1992, 1997)
  LEYDEN(1997)
MONROE (1997)
MONTAGUE (1997)
NEW SALEM (1992)
NORTH ADAMS (1997)
NORTHAMPTON (1997)
NORTHFIELD (1997)
ORANGE (1997)
PETERSHAM (1992)
PHILLIPSTON (1992, 1997)
PLAINFIELD (1997)
  ROWE (1997)
ROYALSTON (1997)
SAVOY (1997)
SHELBURNE (1995, 1997)
SOUTHWICK (1997)
SUNDERLAND (1997)
TEMPLETON (1992, 1997)
WARWICK (1997)
WENDELL (1992, 1997)
WESTMINSTER (1992, 1997)
WINCHENDON (1997)

The following is a list of town IDs and names for which 1990/1991 land use is available. The organization that completed the updates is listed in parentheses.
 
 1 ABINGTON (EOTC)
  2 ACTON (EOTC)
  7 AMESBURY (EOTC)
  9 ANDOVER (EOTC)
 10 ARLINGTON (MWRA)
 14 ASHLAND (EOTC)
 16 ATTLEBORO (EOTC)
 18 AVON (EOTC)
 19 AYER (EOTC)
 20 BARNSTABLE (CAPE)
 23 BEDFORD (EOTC)
 25 BELLINGHAM (EOTC)
 26 BELMONT (MWRA)
 28 BERLIN (EOTC)
 30 BEVERLY (EOTC)
 31 BILLERICA (EOTC)
 32 BLACKSTONE (EOTC)
 34 BOLTON (EOTC)
 35 BOSTON (MWRA)
 36 BOURNE (CAPE)
 37 BOXBOROUGH (EOTC)
 38 BOXFORD (EOTC)
 40 BRAINTREE (EOTC)
 41 BREWSTER (CAPE)
 42 BRIDGEWATER (EOTC)
 44 BROCKTON (EOTC)
 46 BROOKLINE (MWRA)
 48 BURLINGTON (EOTC)
 49 CAMBRIDGE (MWRA)
 50 CANTON (EOTC)
 51 CARLISLE (EOTC)
 52 CARVER (EOTC)
 55 CHATHAM (CAPE)
 56 CHELMSFORD (EOTC)
 57 CHELSEA (MWRA)
 64 CLINTON (EOTC)
 65 COHASSET (EOTC)
 67 CONCORD (EOTC)
 71 DANVERS (EOTC)
 73 DEDHAM (EOTC)
 75 DENNIS (CAPE)
 78 DOVER (EOTC)
 79 DRACUT (EOTC)
 81 DUNSTABLE (EOTC)
 82 DUXBURY (EOTC)
   83 EAST BRIDGEWATER (EOTC)
 86 EASTHAM (CAPE)
 88 EASTON (EOTC)
 92 ESSEX (EOTC)
 93 EVERETT (MWRA)
 96 FALMOUTH (CAPE)
 99 FOXBOROUGH (EOTC)
100 FRAMINGHAM (EOTC)
101 FRANKLIN (EOTC)
105 GEORGETOWN (EOTC)
107 GLOUCESTER (EOTC)
115 GROTON (EOTC)
116 GROVELAND (EOTC)
118 HALIFAX (EOTC)
119 HAMILTON (EOTC)
122 HANOVER (EOTC)
123 HANSON (EOTC)
125 HARVARD (EOTC)
126 HARWICH (CAPE)
128 HAVERHILL (EOTC)
131 HINGHAM (EOTC)
133 HOLBROOK (EOTC)
136 HOLLISTON (EOTC)
138 HOPEDALE (EOTC)
139 HOPKINTON (EOTC)
141 HUDSON (EOTC)
142 HULL (EOTC)
144 IPSWICH (EOTC)
145 KINGSTON (EOTC)
146 LAKEVILLE (EOTC)
147 LANCASTER (EOTC)
149 LAWRENCE (EOTC)
155 LEXINGTON (EOTC)
157 LINCOLN (EOTC)
158 LITTLETON (EOTC)
160 LOWELL (EOTC)
163 LYNN (EOTC)
164 LYNNFIELD (EOTC)
165 MALDEN (EOTC)
166 MANCHESTER (EOTC)
167 MANSFIELD (EOTC)
168 MARBLEHEAD (EOTC)
170 MARLBOROUGH (EOTC)
171 MARSHFIELD (EOTC)
172 MASHPEE (CAPE)
  174 MAYNARD (EOTC)
175 MEDFIELD (EOTC)
176 MEDFORD (MWRA)
177 MEDWAY (EOTC)
178 MELROSE (EOTC)
179 MENDON (EOTC)
180 MERRIMAC (EOTC)
181 METHUEN (EOTC)
182 MIDDLEBOROUGH (EOTC)
184 MIDDLETON (EOTC)
185 MILFORD (EOTC)
187 MILLIS (EOTC)
188 MILLVILLE (EOTC)
189 MILTON (EOTC)
196 NAHANT (EOTC)
198 NATICK (EOTC)
199 NEEDHAM (EOTC)
205 NEWBURY (EOTC)
206 NEWBURYPORT (EOTC)
207 NEWTON (EOTC)
208 NORFOLK (EOTC)
210 NORTH ANDOVER (EOTC)
211 NORTH ATTLEBOROUGH (EOTC)
213 NORTH READING (EOTC)
215 NORTHBOROUGH (EOTC)
216 NORTHBRIDGE (EOTC)
218 NORTON (EOTC)
219 NORWELL (EOTC)
220 NORWOOD (EOTC)
224 ORLEANS (CAPE)
229 PEABODY (EOTC)
231 PEMBROKE (EOTC)
232 PEPPERELL (EOTC)
238 PLAINVILLE (EOTC)
239 PLYMOUTH (EOTC)
240 PLYMPTON (EOTC)
242 PROVINCETOWN (CAPE)
243 QUINCY (EOTC)
244 RANDOLPH (EOTC)
245 RAYNHAM (EOTC)
246 READING (EOTC)
248 REVERE (EOTC)
251 ROCKLAND (EOTC)
252 ROCKPORT (EOTC)
254 ROWLEY (EOTC)
  258 SALEM (EOTC)
259 SALISBURY (EOTC)
261 SANDWICH (CAPE)
262 SAUGUS (EOTC)
264 SCITUATE (EOTC)
266 SHARON (EOTC)
269 SHERBORN (EOTC)
270 SHIRLEY (EOTC)
274 SOMERVILLE (MWRA)
277 SOUTHBOROUGH (EOTC)
284 STONEHAM (MWRA)
285 STOUGHTON (EOTC)
286 STOW (EOTC)
288 SUDBURY (EOTC)
291 SWAMPSCOTT (EOTC)
293 TAUNTON (EOTC)
295 TEWKSBURY (EOTC)
298 TOPSFIELD (EOTC)
300 TRURO (CAPE)
301 TYNGSBOROUGH (EOTC)
303 UPTON (EOTC)
304 UXBRIDGE (EOTC)
305 WAKEFIELD (MWRA)
307 WALPOLE (EOTC)
308 WALTHAM (MWRA)
314 WATERTOWN (EOTC)
315 WAYLAND (EOTC)
317 WELLESLEY (EOTC)
318 WELLFLEET (CAPE)
320 WENHAM (EOTC)
322 WEST BRIDGEWATER (EOTC)
324 WEST NEWBURY (EOTC)
328 WESTBOROUGH (EOTC)
330 WESTFORD (EOTC)
333 WESTON (EOTC)
335 WESTWOOD (EOTC)
336 WEYMOUTH (EOTC)
338 WHITMAN (EOTC)
342 WILMINGTON (EOTC)
344 WINCHESTER (MWRA)
346 WINTHROP (EOTC)
347 WOBURN (MWRA)
350 WRENTHAM (EOTC)
351 YARMOUTH (CAPE)

MAINTENANCE
MassGIS is maintaining this layer. The Land Use Status Map displays the years for which land use data were interpreted.

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