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German City of Melle goes for Municipal GIS

Germany is unique in Europe by not having a national mapping agency with one single data format. All spatial data is specified by the various Bundesland, each have their own format for map information, which is known as the EDBS format. This format is very complex and dates back to the mid ’70’s.

The City of Melle is located in the province of Lower Saxony which is a beautiful area of northwest Germany. Melle is a smaller city but carries one of largest jurisdictions in this region and has an overall population of 250,000. Melle is surrounded by rural areas and belongs to the Osnabruck district. The City of Melle council manages the environment very well and ensures that the beauty and cleanliness of the region is maintained to the highest standards. The council already have extensive experience of using GIS, and recently through a business partner and reseller of Cadcorp products, they procured 5 licences of Cadcorp SIS – Spatial Information System desktop software as a pilot system to determine its suitability for various Council departments.

Melle have subsequently increased their use of Cadcorp products to build Intranet and Internet applications for the municipality based on planning applications, land use, amenities, local interest, route maps, and location maps. Cadcorp has also developed a translator to read the Lower Saxony EDBS data format and now working on formats for the rest of Germany.

Applications being tackled by the City of Melle include planning applications and their approval. By accessing information from the GIS database, the planning department can determine land ownership and make informed decisions on the available land and type of planning required. This could be for any use such as housing, industrial, recreational, and agricultural. Like many cities in Europe, the City of Melle is proud of its commitment to cycle routes to help provide an effective means of transportation that is both quick and environmentally friendly.

The use of Cadcorp SIS in this application is important for the city who wishes to ensure that the cycle routes are well defined and provide the citizens with the optimum route information. The system is used to build and maintain the symbology rules that ensure separation between cyclists and motorized transport. The system uses ‘hot-links’ on the street furniture to provide photographic information of the cycle network at strategic points.