ITR/IM:  Taking the pulse of an expanding urban region:  Greater Phoenix now and what it could be in 2100




A preproposal to the NSF-Information Technology Research Program (Information Management and Applications):  Group proposal, <$1M/yr for 5 years.


Ramon Arrowsmith, Department of Geological Sciences and Frederick Steiner, School of Planning & Landscape Architecture Arizona State University




Robert Bolin, ASU Sociology (

Malcolm Comeaux, ASU Geography (

Jana Fry, ASU Information Technology (

Glen S. Krutz, ASU Political Science (

Peter McCartney, ASU Archeological Research Institute (

Robert Mings, ASU Geography (

Melissa Niederhelman, ASU School of Design (

Ron Dorn, ASU Geography (

Joseph Zehnder, ASU Geography (


In collaboration with


The Los Alamos Urban Security team (

Grant Heiken


Embracing complexity

We are challenged by an opportunity: interactions between humans and their environment are so complicated that each is typically studied in isolation, yet proximity of cities and towns to wild lands and pristine landscapes calls for a more integrated approach to understanding them.  The greater Phoenix Arizona region comprises a desert landscape transforming to an urban center (Figures 1 and 2).  The population of the region has doubled in the last 20 years and is expected to double again in the next 20.  What are the flows of materials, people, other biota, and how do the changes depend on history and the current configuration?  What does it mean to grow so rapidly?  We propose to take the pulse of the region and present a prognosis for growth.  We may explore interventions to keep the region healthy.  We want to know what has happened (all of the different parameters describing the region such as biophysical features, the built environment, and demographics and their variation with time), what is happening, and what can happen.  To describe the history, we need to put together the datasets.  Many are available off the shelf from the various stakeholders (municipalities, county, state, federal, private, academic entities).  To figure out what is happening, we need to establish a means of maintaining the databases that are built and their connectivity and gather new data, so we have the pulse of the region.  To anticipate the future, we have to train our models on the history, situate them in the present, and send them forward and test the results and visualize the various scenarios.

            The opportunity that the greater Phoenix region presents is one of many datasets with varying degrees of interoperability that need to merged using the tools of information technology to develop both theoretical understanding of how cities develop as ecosystems in relation to their surroundings, as well as the application to managing growth.  Growth management is a much debated issue in the region. It has been the subject of legislative action, blue ribbon panels, and ballot-box initiatives. What has been missing is in-depth scientific analysis of the consequences

of the various growth management options..  We can take the complex array of information and use visualization tools to present the spatial relationships among the disparate datasets.  More importantly, we can look at the time dimension to produce a history of change and explore the future as parameters vary. 

            In our discipline-oriented work, we reduce complexity to understand.  We segregate phenomena to look at individual elements.  However, to think about the past, present, and future of urban systems such as Phoenix, in which processes are complexly intertwined, we need the power of computer simulation and visualization to understand and represent the system.  Tools developed for visualizing networks applied to the internet are an example of the potential for unanticipated linkages among diverse datasets along non geographic dimensions (  Such research is at the forefront in Information Technology, and can be challenged by the diverse datasets associated with the greater Phoenix region.

            Not only should we bring diverse datasets together and establish the tools for their inquiry and visualization, but also we can tap into data streams that give us the short term representation of what is happening.  For example, traffic data are gathered in real time by the Arizona Freeway Management system (, and even more importantly for the desert large water management groups (such as the Salt River Project; ) track their water flows carefully (Figure 3).  Tapping into these and many other data streams will let us compare short term high resolution datasets and their variations with those collected over longer time periods and also anticipate future behavior and data collection. 

Changing how atlases are constructed

Text Box: Figure 1.  Landuse in the Phoenix area has rapidly converted from desert and agricultural to urban over the 20th century (Knowles-Yánez, et al., 1999).            From Merriam-Webster Dictionary:  “Atlas: 3a: a bound collection of maps often including illustrations, informative tables, or textual matter b : a bound collection of tables, charts, or plates.”  One of the products of our work will be the construction of an electronic and ecological atlas of the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.  This digital atlas will contain constantly updated representations of biophysical features (such as climate, air, geology, physiography, hydrology, soils, flora, and fauna); built environment (such as prehistoric settlement, development history, current land use, housing, transportation, planned land use, landscapes, business types, tax capacity/real estate value); and demographics (such as population growth, population density, employment growth, median household income) ethnicity, age distribution, and migration and mobility).  These data will be compiled by ASU experts with the aid of staff supported by this grant.  They will include historic data such that changes in the parameters can be compared in a common framework.  Major historic time periods are Quaternary (last 1.6 million years), Holocene (last 10 thousand years), prehistoric, Hispanic exploration and settlement, pre-1900 American exploration and settlement, pre-WWII settlement, 1950s and 1960s modest growth, and 1970s-2000 explosive growth.  Furthermore, we will include forecasts of changes in these parameters over these future time periods:  2005, 2010, 2050, 2100. Interaction with the atlas will use virtual reality tools (such as 3D visualization and texture mapping and color along with animation to provide the 4 dimensional perspective).

Text Box: Figure 2.  (Above) Landsat 753 image of the greater Phoenix region illustrating its alluvial setting near the confluence of the Salt and Verde Rivers and the surrounding mountains.  (Below) Landsat 752 drape on 100m USGS DEM. View is from south Tempe/Chandler toward the South Mountains and Estrella Mtns with the White Tanks in the far distance on the right. Note the complicated pattern of land cover.            Access to the atlas will include raw data availability, as well as web-based tabular, graphical, and virtual reality representations.  We imagine a website that includes interactive maps, but also N-Dimensional representations (in which 3 dimensions come from the spatial aspects of the view, a fourth dimension from time, and the variation of other parameters denoted by color or texture map variations).  These data would be easily accessible.  We will apply information technology to the analysis and synthesis of information, data fusion, data mining, visualization, simulation, and web-based multilevel user (student/decision maker/scientist) inquiry. At ASU, we expect to establish a Decision Theater in which high quality audio and visual presentation systems such as a 180 degree screen with 3D visualization capability will present a synthetic environment along with comfortable ergonomics in which we can bring decision makers together and explore the data, their connections, and dfferent scenarios for change (Decision Theater).  We do not expect to develop a full immersion synthetic environment (i.e., C2 or C6 at the Virtual Reality Application Center,, but the theater will be capable of high resolution stereoscopic viewing using shuttered glasses and a large panoramic semi-circular screen.  The system will be driven by a Silicon Graphics Reality Center ( that will provide high resolution real-time interactivity with the urban eAtlas data and models.  The Theater may be part of the recently established ASU-JPL extended mission facility. While the interaction with data and models will be vigorous in the Decision Theater, web-based multimedia, text, data download and upload, and modeling tools access will be seemless and a visitor to the Decision Theater would be able to revisit a given scenario from the web.

General Research Questions

-What is the past, present, and future distribution of materials and processes in an expanding urban region located in a semi-arid setting and what are the controls of and drivers for change? How is change dependant on history and the current configuration?


-Can we apply multiscale, coupled, deterministic and empirical models to the complex urban-desert system accurately enough to make useful predictions with regard to relevant issues such as air and water quality, real estate values, wildlife distributions, etc.?


-What information technology innovations can help us transfer knowledge to all levels of interested groups: scientists, decision makers, students, voters?


Specific Information Technology, urban studies, urban ecology challenges


1)          Land use modeling.  What is the future of Phoenix?  Given its history, can we develop a model that has a calibrated probability for landuse transitions based upon history (see figure 1), what is near and what is far, and connectivity to test scenarios for development?  Can we go beyond the empiricism to apply some mass balance or other potentially deterministic constraints to improve the basis of the forecasts?

2)          What are the relationships between land use and climate?  Can observations and models of climate (including air quality) be used to evaluate land use change or its likelihood (Figures 1 and 3)?  Can we go the other way and use observations and models of land use (an other parameters) to anticipate climate (or air quality changes)?

3)          What are the relationships between geology/topography/physiography and open space?  Are the mountains which present natural limitations (and threats via the washes that drain them) to development the optimum open space geometries?  What are the optimal geometries of open space and the feature content for land use relative to development pressures?

4)          What are the natural and artificial patterns of vegetation and water flow?  What happens to a water droplet as it enters the Phoenix system either aritifially (having started as rainfall in the upper Colorado River Basin), or naturally as rainfall within the greater Phoenix area?

5)          In the next five years (i.e., the lifetime of the proposed project), urban growth and thus major change will occur in to zones of the greater Phoenix region:  the outer fringe where desert is converted to urban land use, and the interior along the major drainages.  In particular, major development is expected along the Salt River.  The Tempe Town Lake is an active example of this development.  The Rio Salado Project ( will probably rejuvenate the Salt River corridor through south Phoenix, and along it a new Light rail system will carry people and promote development.  This growth prognosis provides us with an important target for documentation and analysis.  We can provide an unprecedented dataset that captures the rapid changes in all of the processes of the natural and urban system.

6)          Representation is a major challenge.  As we argued in the introduction, the reduction of complexity to promote understanding is common, but may be a limiting activity in the analysis of the urban system.  Furthermore, in the process of bringing data together, we find that some so-called data include much interpretation (geologic maps, census tracts, etc.) in contrast to uninterpreted data such as remotely sensed imagery, raw data streams, etc.  How we can represent the different aspects of the greater Phoenix region in a coherent way?  What about the scales of resolution in time and space?  What is the uncertainty in the parameters and how can it be presented as part of the inquiry?

7)          What is common:  time and space.  How do we develop models of the processes?  Establish governing rules for change and then check by taking snapshots.  We can also substitute space for time and look at different places (the edge versus the interior of the urban environment) as an indicator of possible change at a single place in time.

8)          What is meaningful?  Is it useful to compare soil nitrogen versus voting blocks? 

9)          Are layers of data spatially referenced and temporally registered the best way to think about the problem?  What is the best way to represent connectivity and pathways and processes?

10)      A couple of basic themes in urban ecology come out in the American Scientist article by Collins, et al ( Collins, Kinzig, Grimm, Fagan, Hope, Wu, and Borer, 2000, A new urban ecology:  American Scientist, v. 88, p. 416-425.):

a)      Quantification of the ecological footprint of the city.  How much natural productivity (measured in area) is required to support the city? 

b)      What is the total energy expenditure per square meter for various portions of the greater Phoenix area?

c)      What is the variability in process types and rates with position (relative to the city center(s)) or landuse type, or geologic or terrain unit?

d)      Can we quantify or characterize the effects of forces of change and their timescales in the urban ecosystems (disturbance events, ecological succession, disturbance regions, land conversion, evolutionary change, climate change, erosion and deposition)?

e)      What is the probability of patch transition in space and time?


Table 1. Indices of change and the supporting data sources (acronyms are defined at the bottom of the table).  These data will be compiled and form the basis of the urban eAtlas, as well as model calibration.



Population (

Ethnicity (

Income (

Birth/Death/Migration  (State of Arizona)

Seasonal and transient populations (MAG)

Population Density (calculation)

Many others available from the U.S. Census Bureau.



Air pollution (ADEQ, MAG, EPA)

Open space; undeveloped lands (ALRIS, MAG, GRSL)

Surface Water, quality and quantity (USGS gauges and reservoir levels, ADEQ)

Groundwater, quality and quantity (ADWR, ADEQ, USGS)

Irrigation (ADWR)

Habitat (ASU Biology Department, CES, AGFD)

Vegetation (ASU Plant Biology) (AGFD)

Heat Island (ASU Climatology

Quality of Life:

Crime Statistics (AOC)

Juvenile Crime (ADJC)

Dropout Rates (ADE)

Health Statistics (ADHS)

Tourism (ADOC)

Transportation (ADOT, MAG)

Poverty (

Zoning (

Landuse (MAG, CAP-LTER)

And many others as defined by experts on compilation.



Land Values (County assessors)

Parcel database (County assessors)

Home purchases and sales (Seidman)

Residential housing starts (MAG)

Employment (MAG)

Agriculture (ADWR)


ADE Arizona Department of Education (

ADEQ Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (

ADHS Arizona Department of Health Services (

ADJC Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections (

ADOC Arizona Department of Commerce (

ADOT Arizona Department of Transportation (

ADWR Arizona Department of Water Resources (

AGFD Arizona Game and Fish Department (

ALRIS The Arizona Land Resource Information System (

AOC Administrative Office of the Courts for Arizona (

CAP-LTER Central Arizona-Phoenix Long Term Ecological Research (

CES ASU Center for Environmental Studies (

EPA Environmental Protection Agency (

GRSL ASU Geological Remote Sensing Laboratory (

MAG Maricopa Association of Governments (

Seidman L. William Siedman Research Institute at the ASU College of Business (

Real time data streams and determination of high frequency mass and energy balances

We can tap into data streams of information sampled at frequencies of daily or higher and attempt to provide an estimate of the energy expenditure and mass flux per square meter for various portions of the greater Phoenix area.  Given the geographic isolation of the greater Phoenix area (figure 2), we can take total traffic (including trucking) in and out of the area on the major highways, and couple that with air and rail traffic, solid waste, sewage, water, recycling, shipping and receiving, construction, gravel mining, power and power demand, and other data to depict the urban system in an unprecendented ecological light.


Looking forward logistically

Given ASU’s strengths in remote sensing and ties to JPL and NASA, we may take a leadership role in the acquisition of high repeat time satellite or ultra high altitude dirigible remotely sensed data of the greater Phoenix area.  With a cost on the order of $30-50M, a satellite system with an appropriate orbit could be tasked to provide high resolution (cm-dm scale) daily or weekly coverage of the region.  Such a data stream would provide undprecendented monitoring potential, as well as information management challenges.  To prepare for such a project, we will develop information management protocols and calibrations for urban/natural system monitoring.

Scenarios to explore with multiscale coupled models and high quality data

The power of the urban eAtlas goes beyond its dynamic depiction of the rich natural and urban landscape.  We expect to be able to use it in a predictive or at least heuristic sense to explore the effects of different controls on the region.  For example, we expect to develop some common or optimal landuse change models, but what would happen to landuse if there were a 20 year drought?  Or, growth propositions can be examined for their potential impacts on landuse over different time scales.  A major concern of the Greater Phoenix area and other cities is EPA nonattainment of urban air quality standards.  Given our fusion of real time data streams coupled with deterministic interpolations and forecasting, we can both monitor air quality and explore the multitude of mitigation options.  Note that ASU has considerable experience in urban airsheds and mesoscale climate (e.g., Zehnder, Environmental Fluid Dynamics  What would happen with a major earthquake in the Los Angeles region?  Given Phoenix’ proximity and the numerous community and commerce and infrastructure ties and the local geology, such an event is certainly the greatest earthquake hazard for the greater Phoenix area.  Once we have our inventory of materials and processes operating in the area, we can much more easily anticipate the effects of such an event here.  Such an event would have far reaching implications for much of the US, and a detailed characterization of such effects would be possible with the urban eAtlas. Lessons from that portrayal could be easily transferred to other major urban centers.

How do environmental hazards and how changing land uses, urban growth, economic transformations, etc. changes the 'riskscape' of  city.  This could include data sources on technological hazards, point-source polluters, area sources of hazardous emissions, mobile sources etc. Bolin and the CAP-LTER 'Risk Group' has done some work in this area.  For example, this coul include modeling ambient pollution in the valley and how changing urban land uses/transportation networks shifts these over time. These could be coupled with other data on natural hazards-- floods, storms, etc. looking at all of these at different temporal and spatial scales.

We can also use the data modeling and integration as a basis for identifying baseline indicators of susustainability/non-sustainability of the urban region.  What are appropriate sustainability indicators (see table 1)?  The would probably be both environmental and social/demographic.  Establishing the effectiveness and sensitivity of such indicators would clearly be transferable to other urban systems.

Mesoscale atmospheric circulation and precipitation model as featured model-data integration

Zehnder and colleagues are currently running a community mesoscale model that simulates atmospheric circulation and precipitation (the model is based on integration of the 3-dimensional Navier-Stokes equations in time). It is initialized with wind, pressure, temperature, etc. and the circulation evolves in response to external forcing that comes in large part from surface heating. The surface response to solar forcing is quite sensitive to characterization of the surface albedo, heat capacity and moisture.  There is a great deal of heterogeneity in the surface characteristics on the scales at which we can currently run the model  (1 km or so) that is not accurately represented in the current surface data set. We can use remotely sensed data from  LANDSAT or the current EOS platforms to better represent the surface characteristics. The response to local warm and  cool (or dry and moist) spots will have an effect on the basin scale circulations that we wish to capture. There is also a great deal of observational data available that we can use to enhance the model initialization. The Maricopa County Flood control district maintains a network of 18 meteorological stations that can be used for specifying initial conditions and verifying the model forecast fields (Figure 3). In addition, the Salt River Project maintains a network of mesonet stations and is  generating a high resolution precipitation data set.

Incorporating the data described above into the model will be useful to the National Weather Service, Dept of  Environmental Quality and Flood Control districts for short range forecasting of local conditions. This would also fit into the broader objectives of the Greater Phoenix urban eAtlas. Given projections of urban expansion we could modify the surface data characteristics and simulate daily and short term variations in the "new" urban area. Emphasis would be placed on the diurnal temperature cycle, basin scale circulations and changes in the distribution of precipitation through the valley. These are important in determining future power/utility needs, air quality and management of artificial lakes. One could also experiment with alternate development scenarios and determine the changes to the future regional climate. This might lead to optimal development schemes that minimize impact on the microclimate.

The model output described above is often difficult to interpret by anyone other than meteorologists (and often by the  meteorologists). Developing user-friendly, easy to access and visually appealing tools for display of the model output will be easily accommodated in our information management effort.



The urban eAtlas articulates with several K-12 educational standards in the state of Arizona, most notably those in Geography (see; a network across Arizona of more than 2700 teachers is called the Arizona Geographic Alliance.  The "Geographic Alliance" movement is national, supported by the National Geographic). The urban eAtlas facilitates K-12 learning and the research process. In other words, students learn about urban growth issues, and at the same time participate in the research process. Teacher training in the research process would be accomplished by the Arizona Geographic Alliance through a series of weekend workshops.


Table 2.  Relevant education standards for geography


3SS-E8. Use geographic knowledge, skills, and perspectives to explain past,present, and future issues, with emphasis on:  PO 2. how geography is used to improve quality of life, including urban growth and environmental planning; PO 3. using geographic knowledge and skills to analyze contemporary issues, including the debate over water use and availability in Arizona



3SS-P3. Analyze how economic, political, cultural, and social processes interact to shape patterns and characteristics of human populations, interdependence, and cooperation and conflict, with emphasis on: PO 6. function and change in the size, structure, and arrangement of urban and suburban areas, including the growth of Arizona cities

3SS-P4. Analyze the interactions between human activities and the natural world in different regions, including changes in the meaning, use, distribution, and importance of natural resources, with emphasis on: PO 6. policies and programs for resource use and management, including the trade-off between environmental quality and economic growth in the twentieth century

3SS-P5. Apply geographic knowledge of people, places, and environments to understand the past and present and plan for the future, with emphasis on: PO 1. using geographic knowledge, skills, and perspectives to solve contemporary problems in the community and Arizona



Information Technology and Information Management tools and research

See figure 5.  Here, we need some serious IT techno talk.


Commentary from Jim George via Grant Heiken

He said that things are moving so fast that he has the following


(1) Most everything that we did is now on Open Source at To build upon what we have done that would be best for your purposes would take about 6 months.

(2) The tools that we paid for are now free, including Development, CORBA-ORB, and Data Buses.

(3) Using XML/XSL for input specifications

(4) Worry about authentication and security as your project grows.

Collaboration with the Urban Security Team at Los Alamos National Laboratory

We need a bit more here.


The Los Alamos Urban Security team are partners in this project, focusing their efforts on modeling, using large and diverse data sets (like the"framework" part of Urban Security). Of special interest is the airflow and runoff studies done by Mike Brown, Steve Burian, and Tim MacPherson and L2F by the Georges.


An important aspect of the integrative training aspect of this project will be the collaborative and sustained interaction through graduate student and post doc work with the LANL team.  They have had much success with students spending extended periods at LANL in the rich, creative, and technical environment where coding, algorithms, and scenarios can be developed and tested, and then brought back to ASU and implemented in the urban eAtlas, as well as applied to the urban security research problems the LANL team is addressing.

Multidisciplinary strengths of Arizona State University



GIS certificate

GIS lab/VIS lab/ARI-LTER lab

Remote sensing

Herberger Center

Morrison Institute

Greater Phoenix 2100


Setting in large municipality

EPA-funded SCERP project

"Virtual studio" with three Italian universities on the planning of Sardinia


Integrating Greater Phoenix area informatics efforts

Across the ASU campus and within City, County, State, and Federal agencies, informatics efforts are underway.  This project would work to integrate as many of those as possible.  The ASU GIS Lab (managed by Jana Fry; has these projects underway:  Maricopa Association of Governments 2000 GIS Database Enhancement Project; Governor's Division for Children and Arizona Juvenile Justice Commission GIS for Human Services; Brookings Institution Metropolitan Phoenix Growth Study; Ak-Chin Native American Community's Enterprise GIS; Central Arizona Phoenix Long Term Ecological Research (CAP LTER) Historic Land Use Phases One and Two; Arizona Geographic Information Council Education Subcommittee ALRIS Spatial Data CD. 

The Archaeological Research Institute at ASU (information managed by Peter McCartney; has developed online publications of archaeological research datasets with metadata and directed several large collaborative database projects serving management and academic needs.  Peter McCartney and others were recently funded for a National Science Foundation Biological Databases and Informatics (BDI) project entitled: Networking Our Research Legacy: Infrastructure to Document, Manage, and Access Ecological Data Resources.  Their primary concerns are access to primary data, Locating and identifying relevant information, Diverse and dynamic state of information storage formats, and Targeting user audiences.  We expect to work closely with the BDI project and extend the tools that they develop.

The ASU Geological Remote Sensing lab ( has world class expertise in the development and application of remote sensing to geological and environmental studies.  Current projects include: Phoenix Land Cover Classification using Landsat-TM (NSF--CAP-LTER), and Global Urban Land Use/Change using ASTER (NASA). Online data include:  CAP LTER Landsat TM data server, Historic Landsat TM/MSS and AVHRR data, Arizona State 1993 Landsat TM Image Server, TIMS and NS001 Data Archive, CAP LTER Land Cover Classifications, and MASTER Data.  A related innovative project was the City of Scottsdale Remote Sensing Project (  Researchers were able to significantly optimize stormwater estimation by application of remote sensing analysis to determination of perviousness of surfaces.

Along with the above ASU facilities almost every city and numerous county, state, and federal agencies manage digital data and this project will provide a coordinating umbrella to minimize duplication and to maximize completeness of spatial data use.


Management plan and budget

The project will be lead by the Arrowsmith-Steiner team with significant input and interaction with colleagues from across ASU and other Greater Phoenix 2100 stakeholders.  We will follow the model of strong collaborative ties among the diverse disciplinary interests that has developed in LTER and IGERT.  We envision that disciplinary teams of faculty, postdoctoral scholars, and graduate students will work together to discover, compile, quality control, and work with data from their general disciplinary area.  The disciplinary areas are:  biophysical features, built environment, and demographics.  Each includes a modeling componenent. The analysis and synthesis of the data, application to modeling, and development of visualization and access tools will make up the bulk of the research of the project.  We believe that the project will find focus if its development includes research in aspects of its production, idealization, and application.  Therefore, we expect to offer eight graduate research assistantships per year that will be awarded on a competitive basis to colleagues who submit short proposals to the management team.  Evaluation will include intellectual merit, appropriateness for overall goals of Greater Phoenix 2100, and sensitivity to the continuity of thesis and dissertation projects. Note also the collaborative extended training visits to our LANL partners by the students and post docs as described above. 

We will need an Information Technology specialist to manage the technical coordination of the project.  We also request support for a professional Education and Outreach (E&O) staff member who will work to present the interactive opportunity of the Greater Phoenix project to educators and students, decision makers and citizens, and natural and social scientists.  We hope that people from all levels of interest will find the interaction with the data and models fascinating.  Education and outreach will include the development and testing of explanatory and training materials and lesson plans.

Along with the E&O, we firmly believe that a graphic designer will be helpful in a number of ways.  First is the element of information design that will be required in visually translating data and model results as well as the process of making such information about the greater Phoenix area accessible to people. Information design as it relate to organization, iconography, hierarchy, communication and comprehension will be important aspects of this project.   Secondly, interactivity as it relates to the information and the overall outcome will be an important consideration. How will people use and access this information and how could it be enhanced by an interactive context? There are some exciting possibilities with incorporating digital media into the  project, but efforts must be made to make the results user friendly and  appropriate to the function as well as visually successful.

            We do not expect to have to buy very much data. Most of the expense will be in the transformation of the data to common reference frames and representation schemes.  Physically, this project and its staff would be housed adjacent to either the GIS lab or the ARI-LTER GIS lab and would include a series of servers and workstations along with peripheral devices and the Data and modeling theater.

Multi dimensional planning (advisory) council

            Acting in an advisory and review mode, prominent social scientists, economists, politicians, scientists, and interested citizens will work with the management team.  The council will provide focus while also checking for completeness for databases, scenario generation, and promotion of the project to the Greater Phoenix 2100 community and beyond.  Potential members include:  Jim Holway, former City of Phoenix Mayor; Ray Quay, assistant Phoenix planning director; Rita Pearson, ???; and some others….

Schematic budget (in $k)

Budget summary







Numbers are in $k


Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5
















IT Information Manager ($60k/yr)







E&O staff ($50k/yr 50% FTE)







Graphic design expert ($50k/yr 50%FTE)







Sysadmin ($50k/yr 25%; except first year to set up)







Professor/PI summer salaries (4)







Post Docs (4 @$30-$35k/yr)







Graduate students (8 @ $20.8k/yr--AY 50%FTE and summer 100%)






Fringe (17% for staff and 9% for students)







Total Salaries and Fringe (assumes 4% cost of living increase per year)






















Servers (3)







Workstations (lab and offices)







Peripherals (printers/plotter/digitizer/scanner)







Disks and tape drives














Data and modeling theater






Total direct







Indirect costs (52.5% of direct not including permanent equipment)







Total per year
















The ASU commitment to this project (in addition to the major support for the CAP-LTER and the Urban Ecology IGERT) will be sufficient space and an Environmentally friendly IT type.

Letters of support and collaboration

Jack Dangermond, ESRI

Grant Heiken, LANL Urban Security group

Ray Quay, City of Phoenix



Knowles-Yánez, Kim, Cherie Moritz, Jana Fry, Charles L. Redman, Matt Bucchin, and Peter H. McCartney. August 1999. Historic Land Use: Phase I Report on Generalized Land Use.  Central Arizona - Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research Contribution No. 1, Center for Environmental Studies, Arizona State University, Tempe.