Migrating our parcel management to the Parcel Fabric has been a game changer. It’s transformed our internal processes, drastically reducing the time it takes us to make updates, but it’s also making a difference far beyond our team and department. We are now supporting multiple departments who recognize the value of up-to-date parcel data and, because it’s in the Fabric, are able to use it with their own systems and workflows.
How Oklahoma County Modernized Land Records & Streamlined Workflows with ArcGIS Parcel Fabric
Oklahoma County, with a population of 796,292 and a parcel count of 320,000, knew it needed a more efficient way to manage parcels. The workflows they were using to make updates to parcel data and make them available to the public was long and involved many steps. The workflow also included running a script to turn CAD lines into a single GIS tax parcel polygon feature class. Full parcel history was not recorded, and the set-up allowed for only a single editor per CAD file at a time.
The Oklahoma County team, led by Project Manager Tim Conner, recognized the benefits of the Parcel Fabric for managing tax parcel data. They saw several areas in which it offered value that aligned with the County’s goals:
- Multi-editor environment
- Automatic preservation of historic features and parcels
- Standardized parcel creation
- Increased accuracy
- One location for data
- Ability to adjust data easily to match any new control
- Ability to condense the parcel editing workflow
With a small team of 4, the County sought specialized expertise from Esri business partner, Pro-West & Associates. With local government Parcel Fabric migrations forming a core pillar of Pro-West's business, the County knew they would receive the right guidance, training, technical expertise, and resource capacity for a successful project and long-term value.
Together, the County and Pro-West devised a plan for the project that included data clean-up, configuration of a progress dashboard in ArcGIS Online, a pilot project to test the process and identify issues, followed by county-wide migration and, finally, on-site training for parcel editors.
During the pilot phase, extensive testing was performed. Within the original CAD files, several CAD line types had to be combined to create polygons in the Parcel Fabric, ultimately generating layers including PLSS townships, sections, quarters, sixteenths, subdivisions, lots, tax parcels and encumbrances.
The pilot project – an area of 16 PLSS sections across two townships – allowed this process to be tested, and identified any potential obstacles related to CAD feature conversion. Once the process was refined based on the results of the pilot, the county-wide migration began.
After the pilot was completed and the workflow finalized, the migration was completed one township at a time, excluding annotation. This migration strategy allowed for maximum efficiency: migrating annotation was a time-consuming process, so this was performed for the entire County at the end of the migration process.
Once a township was migrated, the status of the township on the progress dashboard was updated. Interim deliverables in the form of a packaged ArcGIS Pro Project and file geodatabase were sent to the county upon completion of every five townships. The final deliverables included a packaged ArcGIS Pro Project and file geodatabase containing the finished countywide Parcel Fabric and annotation feature class.
Fabric is now fully integrated into the department, allowing County staff and residents to benefit from up-to-date parcel data at any time. The process of updating parcel data is much more efficient, history is automatically preserved, and users can be confident that the information they see is accurate.
But the success of the project doesn’t stop there. The benefits of authoritative, up-to-date tax parcel data are being leveraged across the organization. The team in the Assessor’s Department is now supporting many other departments, to the point where they have added 2 team members.
The project has opened doors to GIS for the entire organization. Departments including the Clerk’s Office, Emergency Management and County Commissioners are using GIS, connecting data in the Parcel Fabric with third-party business systems to bring efficiency and enhanced information accuracy to their own workflows.
Growth beyond the Parcel Fabric implementation has also come in the form of GIS solutions. Change detection is now also being used in the field to help assessors visualize property changes. ArcGIS Dashboards are being used by departments including Emergency Management, County Clerk for deed sales, County Commissioners for asset tracking, and an ArcGIS Hub site has been configured so that taxpayers can access all GIS data and information for Oklahoma County in one location.