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Grundy County E-911

During 2007/2008 as a new County/City Law Enforcement Center in Grundy County was under construction, and as County officials anticipated moving into the new center, they also looked to the future regarding the needs of the counties current 911 system. After research and deliberation, the County approached GHRPC regarding the creation of an E911 GIS dataset for use in the upgraded PowerMap system.

The PowerMap system is a program that integrates GIS data into the 911 call center. This technology results in the 911 dispatcher having the ability to look at an aerial photo, overlaid with a road map, to identify a location symbol to which that particular phone number is attached . In addition, with the appropriate equipment and software, data on cell towers can be used to locate the origin of a cell phone signal. Landmark information is also included such as buildings, cemeteries, parks etc. as if they had a proper address, which eliminates confusion when a caller is distraught, confused, or unfamiliar with the area. The Point Location method was utilized in the process and consisted of collecting the addresses and location of 5,278 structures throughout the county, and the names, addresses, and locations of 55 rural landmarks.

This project presented many challenges as numerous homes did not display a visible address and others were marked incorrectly. The layout of the roads made determining the street names difficult and old records, used for reference, provided conflicting information. Eventually, these issues were resolved as the data was checked, rechecked, and cross referenced with other sources of verification. The result is a highly accurate data set which will serve its purpose well and will be easily maintained and updated. The project also exposed GHRPC staff to the process at a level not experienced before, developing capacity that will prove to be very valuable to the region as other communities and counties seek to upgrade their 911 systems.

For questions or more information please contact Cheryl Graham at (660) 359 – 5636 ext. 15.