Columbia Maryland Watershed Planning Map

Interactive mapping to assist residents in identifying their watershed as defined in the Watershed Management Plan

View watershed map example in new window

Why was this created?

The Watershed Management Plan for Columbia, Maryland was developed by a consulting firm in 2008-2009. This interactive map replaced a PDF that showed general boundaries for the watersheds as defined in the plan. The primary objective was to reach out to residents so they could learn more details of the watershed boundaries to better understand the plan.

While some of the watersheds in the plan match the Maryland Department of Natural Resources watershed boundaries, several of the DNR watersheds were subdivided for the purposes of the plan.

How did it work in the 2009-11 era?

A GIS shapefile of the planning watershed boundaries was provided with the Watershed Plan. This was converted to a KML file for use in Google Maps. The maximum and minimum latitude and longitude were computed for each watershed. This provides information for the "bounding box" used in the fitBound API method to implement the "Go" link to display the corresponding watershed.

The default view of the map is "Terrain" since this best shows the streams and watersheds. The map view is most helpful for residents to identify their location. The satellite view is particularly useful for seeing the open spaces, impervious areas, and other factors in watershed planning.

Since then, the licensing terms from Google have changed. The map is no longer interactive and displays "For development purposes only." The links to the EPA and Maryland Department of Natural Resources that provided information about the watersheds no longer work.

See also...

  • The Google Maps API documentation is available on the Google web site.