Minnesota Land Use and Cover: 1990s Census of the Land (8 category statewide)

This page last updated: 10/26/2017
Metadata created using Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines

Go to Section:
1. Overview
2. Data Quality
3. Data Organization
4. Coordinate System
5. Attributes
6. Distribution - Get Data
7. Metadata Reference

Section 1 Overview
Originator Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Title Minnesota Land Use and Cover: 1990s Census of the Land (8 category statewide)
Abstract This data set integrates six different source data sets to provide a generalized overall view of Minnesota's land use/cover. The six source data sets covered different parts of the state, were in differing formats, and used different legend classifications. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources developed a generalized 8-category legend and translated each source data set's original detailed classification into the 8-category system. They also standardized the data to 30 meter grid cells. The data set was used to produce a 43 inch by 50 inch wall map of the same title (out-of-print).
Purpose The original purpose of the data set was to create a wall map showing a statewide view of Minnesota land use. The data set can also be used for general statewide analysis. For studies at the regional, county or more local level, users are encouraged to go back to the original data sets which contain more spatial and attribute detail.
Time Period of Content Date
Currentness Reference The dates for the source data sets range between 1987 - 1996.

1. Agricultural and Transition Areas: Approximately 1989 - 1991
2. Forested Areas: 1991 - 1996
3. Metropolitan Counties: Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery 1991 (all classes in original data set were used); Generalized Land Use from the Metropolitan Council 1990 (only the farmstead class from the original data was used)
4. Beltrami and Clearwater Counties: 1987
5. Olmsted County: 1992
6. Camp Ripley 1992 and 1996; Beltrami Island State Forest 1993 and 1996
Progress Complete
Maintenance and Update Frequency None Planned
Spatial Extent of Data Minnesota
Bounding Coordinates -97.5
Place Keywords Minnesota, MN
Theme Keywords imageryBaseMapsEarthCover, Land Use, Land Cover
Theme Keyword Thesaurus ISO 19115 Topic Category
Access Constraints Only the 8-class legend attributes are distributed for this data set. For the more detailed legends, users need to obtain the original data sets (see Associated Data Sets element).
Use Constraints See Disclaimer field for complete use conditions.
Contact Person Information Hal Watson, GIS Section Manager
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
500 Lafayette Rd
St. Paul, MN  55155-4025
Phone: 651-259-5508
Email: hal.watson@state.mn.us
Browse Graphic Click to view a data sample.
This application on MnGeo's web site allows users to view the 8-category map and to generate statistics by state, county, or user-specified group of counties.
Associated Data Sets Land Use - Minnesota, Agricultural and Transition Areas
This data set uses a 17-category classification scheme. It covers 63 counties in the western and southern parts of the state, including the portions of Roseau and Morrison Counties not contained in the Camp Ripley / Beltrami Island State Forest data set. See: http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/chouse/metadata/luse89.html

Land Use - Minnesota Forested Area
The Manitoba Remote Sensing Centre interpreted Landsat TM imagery to create a land use data set for the following predominantly forested counties: Aitkin, Carlton, Cass, Cook, Crow Wing, Hubbard, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Mille Lacs, Pine, St. Louis, and Wadena. See: http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/chouse/metadata/mrsc_lu.html

1997 Generalized Land Use for the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area
This data set encompasses the seven county Twin Cities (Minneapolis and St. Paul) Metropolitan Area in Minnesota. See: https://gisdata.mn.gov/dataset/us-mn-state-metc-plan-generl-lnduse-historical

Interpreted TM Satellite Imagery for the Metropolitan Counties
This 10-category data set was created by the University of Minnesota's Department of Forestry using imagery from June 16 and September 4, 1991. A multitemporal classification using TM bands 1-5 was used to classify 'neighborhoods' of pixels which were similar into a single class. The accuracy measured was 91% for the ten classes and 95% for five classes (developed, cropland, forest, wetland, and water). For more information, see: http://land.umn.edu/data/meta.php

Olmsted County
This 37 category land use data set was developed by the Olmsted County Planning Department. For more information, contact Olmsted County: gissupport@co.olmsted.mn.us

Beltrami and Clearwater Counties Land Use
See: https://gisdata.mn.gov/dataset/biota-landcover-beltclea-1986

Camp Ripley and Beltrami Island State Forest
This data set covers Camp Ripley, a military reservation in northern Morrison County, and Beltrami Island State Forest, in southeastern Roseau County. See: https://gisdata.mn.gov/dataset/biota-landcover-ripbisf-1990s

Section 2 Data Quality
Attribute Accuracy No more accurate than the original attribute coding. See documentation for each source data set (listed in the 'Associated Data Sets' element).

Note: for the 10-category data set created by the University of Minnesota's Dept. of Forestry, one minor area of misclassification has been reported in the 'developed' category. In some areas, what appears to be cattail swamp / wetland was grouped with developed lands.
Logical Consistency Data are stored within a valid ARC/GRID data structure.
Completeness A lookup table (lulookup.dbf) details the translation between the original legend categories and the 8-category system. Also, see 'Completeness' element in metadata records for each source data set (listed in the 'Associated Data Sets' element).
Horizontal Positional Accuracy No more accurate than the original horizontal positional accuracy. See metadata records for each source data set (listed in the 'Associated Data Sets' element). No formal statistical tests have been conducted on this data set. Additional error was introduced during the gridding process described in the Lineage element. Users who have a version of this data set created before 4/2000 should be aware that making the corrections noted in 'Lineage' slightly shifted the data in Chisago, Roseau and Wabasha Counties.
Vertical Positional Accuracy Not applicable.
Lineage Land Use Data Sources:

Agricultural and Transition Areas
Forested Areas
Interpreted TM satellite imagery for the Twin Cities metro area
Generalized Land Use for the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area (only the farmstead category)
Olmsted County
Beltrami and Clearwater Counties
Camp Ripley and Beltrami Island State Forest

County Boundaries Data Source:
MnDNR's CTYBDNE2 coverage - see documentation at: https://gisdata.mn.gov/dataset/bdry-counties-in-minnesota

MnDNR's Processing Steps:

All land use/cover data was put together by county in raster format using Arc/INFO GRIDs. The data that existed as vector data sets (Agriculture and Transition Areas, farmstead category from the Metropolitan Council data set, and Olmsted County) was rasterized to 30 meter by 30 meter cells prior to mosaicking using the THEME menu, Convert to Grid option in ArcView's Spatial Analyst. All county tiles were based on DNR's CTYBDNE2 coverage.

Special Processing for the metro area: Two data sets were used in the metro area. All land use classifications in the interpreted TM satellite imagery data set were used since they more closely matched classifications used in other areas in Minnesota. The one class that was not well-represented in the TM data set was scattered houses so the farmstead class from the Metropolitan Council land use data was incorporated into the TM data. This was done using simple overlay techniques in Spatial Analyst.

Individual county data sets were merged into tiles based on DNR's administrative regions. The DNR administrative regions coverage was derived from the CTYBDNE2 coverage since most regional boundaries are based on county borders.

Each regional landuse/cover grid was then subjected to the following clean-up process. When raster data is mosaicked, there are gaps that occur between the tiles where they did not match up perfectly. Typically these gaps are very small, on the order of one or two cells in width. To fill in these gaps, the NIBBLE process in Spatial Analyst was used to replace cells that were offsite by using nearest neighbor rules. Each data set was masked so that only those cells within each region were processed. This is similar to a clip command in a vector GIS system.

Each of the regional data set grids were then mosaicked together using the MERGE request and then cleaned-up using the NIBBLE request as described above.

The resulting landuse/cover grid had one attribute called VALUE. This item contained the attribute codes for each of the different landuse/cover classes from each of the differing coding schemes. Since there were 6 sources for the data and since there were 5 different coding schemes, a new coding scheme had to be developed to maintain data integrity. To accomplish this, the data from different sources was offset in the following fashion:

100 Beltrami / Clearwater Counties
200 Camp Ripley / Beltrami Island State Forest
300 Forested
400 Olmsted County
500 Ag and Transition Areas
600 Twin Cities metro (TM and farmsteads)

Using this coding scheme, every unique data value was preserved. In all but Olmsted County, the data sets were simply offset by the appropriate value. For Olmsted County, where the landuse and cover class values exceeded 100, they were simply numbered sequentially from 1 to 37 and then offset by 400.

A lookup table (lulookup.dbf) was then created with the following fields:
New_code - The new code as it exists in the statewide grid
Orig_code - The Original code as it existed in the source data
Map_code - The codes as they were assigned on the statewide 1990s Land Use and Cover map
Orig_desc - The Original class description
Map_desc - The Class descriptions as shown on the statewide 1990s Land Use and Cover map

This table could be related/joined to the grid table using the VALUE item in the GRID and the NEW_CODE item in the lookup table.

Files for Public Distribution: A file that contained only the NEW_CODE item was created for public distribution. It is available in ArcGRID and EPPL7 raster formats. The lookup table, lulookup.dbf, is provided to show how the detailed legend categories in the original data sets were matched to one of the eight land use categories in this data set.

Several reported errors were corrected (4/2000):
1. City of Roseau: the western portion of the city was recoded from cultivated (2) to urban (1).
2. Chisago County: two small areas along the northern county boundary were recoded from forested (5) to unknown (9).
3. City of Wabasha: the northern portion of the city was recoded from water (6) to urban (1).
4. City of Hammond: the eastern portion of the city was recoded from cultivated (2) to urban (1).
5. Olmsted County: an area just northeast of the city of Rochester was recoded from unknown (9) to cultivated (2).

Section 3 Spatial Data Organization (not used in this metadata)

Section 4 Coordinate System
Horizontal Coordinate Scheme Universal Transverse Mercator
UTM Zone Number 15E
Horizontal Datum NAD83
Horizontal Units meters
Cell Width 30
Cell Height 30

Section 5 Attributes
Overview 1. Urban and rural development
Residential, commercial, industrial, cultural and recreational developments and related developments such as power plants, power lines, pipelines, airports, waste treatment facilities, golf courses, farmsteads and feedlots. Associated structures include garages, sheds and landscaped areas.

2. Cultivated land
Areas under intensive cropping or rotation, including fallow fields and fields seeded for forage or cover crops that exhibit linear or other patterns associated with current tillage

3. Hay/Pasture/Grassland
Areas covered by grasslands and herbaceous plants; these may contain up to one-third shrub and tree cover. Some areas may be used as pastures and mowed or grazed. Included are fields that show evidence of past tillage but now appear to be abandoned and grown over with native vegetation or planted with a cover crop.

4. Brushland
Areas with a combination of grass, shrubs, and trees in which deciduous or coniferous tree cover comprises from one to two-thirds of the area, or shrub cover comprises more than one-third of the area. These areas are often found adjacent to hay/pasture/grassland or forested areas and vary greatly in shape and extent.

5. Forested
Areas where two-thirds or more of the total canopy cover is composed of predominantly woody deciduous and coniferous species and areas of regenerated or young forest where commercial timber has been completely or partially removed by logging, other management activities or natural events; includes woodlots, shelterbelts and plantations.

6. Water
Permanent bodies of water such as lakes, rivers, reservoirs, stock ponds and open water areas where photo evidence indicates that the areas are covered by water the majority of the time

7. Bog/Marsh/Fen
Grassy, wet areas with standing or slowly moving water. Vegetation consists of grass and sedge sods, and common hydrophilic vegetation such as cattail and rushes. These areas include wetlands with lowland coniferous forest and peat-covered or peat-filled depressions with a high water table; areas are often interspersed with channels or pools of open water.

8. Mining
Areas stripped of topsoil revealing exposed substrate such as sand or gravel, including gravel quarries, mine tailings, borrow pits and rock quarries. Included are areas that lack appreciable soil development or vegetation cover such as rock outcrops, sand dunes or beaches.

9. Unknown
Areas that were not classified or were unlabelled in the original data sets.
Detailed Citation
Table Detail:

Section 6 Distribution
Publisher Minnesota Geospatial Information Office (MnGeo)
Publication Date 1999
Contact Person Information Nancy Rader, GIS Data Specialist
Minnesota Geospatial Information Office (MnGeo)
658 Cedar Street, Room 300
St. Paul, MN  55155
Phone: 651-201-2489
Email: gisinfo.mngeo@state.mn.us
Distributor's Data Set Identifier luse8
Distribution Liability MnGeo's data disclaimer is online: http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/chouse/disclaimer.html
Ordering Instructions This data set is distributed on the internet by clicking below after Online Linkage. Doing so will tell your browser to start downloading a self-extracting 'ZIP' file which will contain the following:

- An Arc/INFO Grid file
- A default color palette (.clr) for use when displaying in software such as ArcView
- lulookup.dbf: a database that shows how each category in the original data sets was reclassified into the 8-category system.
- Documentation (.htm) file for the dataset
- NOTICE.RTF, an important notice about this data set that can be read by most word processing software, and an ascii text version of the same notice (NOTICE.TXT)

After downloading this self-extracting 'zip' file (which will have an 'exe' extension), simply execute (run) the file. (For example, you can double click it from Windows Explorer or File Manager). Doing this will automatically extract the files described above. You can then delete file types that you do not need, if any.

The file is also available in EPPL7 format. Go to ftp://ftp.gisdata.state.mn.us/pub/data/phys_biol/landuse
Online Linkage I AGREE to the notice in "Distribution Liability" above. Clicking to agree will either begin the download process, link to a service, or provide more instructions. See "Ordering Instructions" above for details.

Section 7 Metadata Reference
Metadata Date 10/26/2017
Contact Person Information Nancy Rader, GIS Data Specialist
Minnesota Geospatial Information Office (MnGeo)
658 Cedar Street, Room 300
St. Paul, MN  55155
Phone: 651-201-2489
Email: gisinfo.mngeo@state.mn.us
Metadata Standard Name Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines
Metadata Standard Version 1.2
Metadata Standard Online Linkage http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/committee/standards/mgmg/metadata.htm

This page last updated: 10/26/2017
Go back to top