New York-New Jersey Harbor Estuary Geographic Information System (GIS)

State TrusteeNew York Department of Environmental Conservation

Case Name:


United States of America

Restoration Types:

Education; Habitat Creation; Population Support; Protection/Acquisition


Affected DOI Resources:

Migratory Birds; Recreational Use Loss


Long Island City



Project Description

Although a vast amount of geospatial data from the NY-NJ Harbor Estuary existed before the 1990s, a majority of the information only existed in paper form. In the event of an oil or chemical spill, this information was not readily accessible to response personnel. A centralized repository of up-to-date information was needed for timely, informed response during emergency situations. Utilizing funding from the Exxon Bayway oil spill settlement, the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) led a project to gather existing data from the NY portion of the NY-NJ Harbor Estuary to add to their centralized Geographic Information System (GIS). The agency digitized their resource maps and aerial imagery, including tidal wetlands, coastal freshwater wetlands, critical environmental areas, petroleum and chemical bulk storage facilities, erosion hazard areas, fish spawning areas, and shellfish beds. Existing data from the NY State Natural Heritage Database and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Bathymetric Data surveys were adjusted to the state plane coordinate system and added to the GIS. NYS DEC also used a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver to ground truth regional land use and land cover data. In addition to being used for spill response, this GIS project had several ancillary benefits including enabling the NYS DEC to analyze tidal wetland trends over a period of 16 years to better regulate these areas, and improving natural resource management and planning in New York City.

Restoration Land Ownership

County or Municipal; Fish and Wildlife Service; National Park Service; Private; State

Parties Implementing Restoration

New York Department of Environmental Conservation

DOI Project Representatives

Fish and Wildlife Service

Restoration Documents

Document NameDocument Date
No records to display.

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New Jersey Ecological Services Field Office

4 East Jimmie Leeds Road, Suite 4, Galloway, NJ 08205 | (609) 383-3938 |

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