LiDAR is at the core of numerous government data gathering projects due to its accuracy, broad application (from mapping terrain for reconnaissance to creating forest height maps) and cost effectiveness.
LiDAR data is used extensively to count and asses city’s many trees, with final maps detailing their individual heights and crown widths. Field arborists can use these maps to determine the legality of tree removals and use elevation data to manage storm water with strategic tree planting, assess pavement conditions, hydraulic modeling and roadside measurements.
LiDAR is also very useful for more accurate shoreline maps, and their digital elevation models to assist emergency response operations, erosion studies and conservation. It helps map landscapes to assess flood risk, inform conservation work, survey water pipelines and dam infrastructure, and monitor the condition of assets and corridors.
LiDAR captures a large array of data — trees and shrubs, hills and valleys, cars and houses, billboards and road signs with algorithms working on sorting out relevant features. While the original purpose of capture may be to count trees or assess pavement conditions, the data can be utilized later for various other analysis.