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About Plan Visualization

The following overview of the Plan interfacing with Google Earth is broken out into the following subsections for expanded information, including:

 

 


Project Alignments

It is very important to note that project shapes are represented in Google Earth as stylized lines and do not represent actual alignments. The lines have been made semi-transparent with exaggerated widths. The information windows display project descriptions also contain a reminder of this fact.

 

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Project Shapes

Each Plan project and study that is displayed in Google Earth has four components. The first is the project's shape, which is a stylized representation of the project. Each shape also has an "info" icon. Pointing the cursor at this "info" icon makes the icon increase in size, makes the shape turn opaque, and makes the project's name label become visible. This highlighting and labeling allows users to know which project is being selected, and see the extent of the project shape when it overlaps with other shapes. Finally, clicking in the "info" icon calls up the project's Info Window. This window contains information about each project and provides links (where available) to other online resources for project information, such as a project's Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

The animated image below illustrates how to click on a project shape to identify it and see its Info Window.

Project Shape Animation

 

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Layer MenuWorking with Built-In Layers

Google Earth has a series of built-in layers which allow users to add other pre-defined layers to the Earth. These layers include geographic features, jurisdictional boundaries, points of interest, etc.

Some of these built-in layers may be turned on by default. While viewing the LRTP Visualization, it may be desirable to turn off unwanted layers. Layers can be turned off by unchecking the box next to them in the Layers panel.

One built-in layer which is very useful for purposes of visualizing the Plan is the "roads" layer. Google Earth represents existing roads with yellow lines. (See the image to the right.) Highways are labeled with shields identifying the highway route numbers, and other roads (which appear when zoomed in) are labeled with the road names.

Example Road TransparencyThe Plan's shapes are presented above (on top of) the pre-defined roads in Google Earth. Because the Plan's shapes are semi-transparent, the yellow roads can show through the Plan shapes.

Users can turn on the Roads layer and other pre-defined layers using the layers sidebar, which is located in the lower-left corner of the Google Earth window.

Another useful built-in layer is the "borders" layer. This layer will show the jurisdictional boundaries of cities, counties and states. As with roads, this layer is built-in to Google Earth and can be turned on and off by checking and unchecking the "borders" checkbox in the Layers panel. An animation showing the borders layer is presented below.

 

Borders Layer Animation

 

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Working with Plan Layers

Plan Layers

The Plan visualization contains layers which can be independently toggled on and off. These layers are described below.

The Plan layers are visible in the Places sidebar at the left-hand side of the Google Earth window, above the Layers sidebar. Each layer (Highways, Transit, etc.) can be toggled off and on by clicking the check-box next to the name of the layer. Please note that clicking the check boxes next to the feature types (Corridor Study, New Transit, New Road, etc.) does not currently have any effect within Google Earth.

This layers list also acts as a legend, illustrating which color relates to which project type. It should be noted that the lines on the map are semi-transparent, yet the color samples in the layers list (legend) are opaque. Therefore, the colors in the layers list will not match up exactly with the colors of the project shapes on the map.

In order to provide some context, other layers have been included in the LRTP Google Earth Visualization. These supplementary layers are grouped together at the bottom of the 2034 LRTP tree in a folder called "Other LRTP Layers" which contains the following layers:

  • HRTPO Boundary: the extent of the HRTPO jurisdiction.
  • HRPDC Boundary: the extent of the HRPDC jurisdiction.

 

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Major Highway Improvements

The major highway improvements layer contains "regionally significant" roadway projects of four types: new roads, corridor studies, widening/improvement of existing roads and intersection improvements.

Stylized shapes are used to represent New Road, Widening/Improvement, and Corridor Study projects. These shapes are not intended to represent potential alignments, but instead give a general indication of the area/corridor/location being studied.

New Road (red line)

Corridor Study (pink line)

New Road (red line)

Corridor Study
(dark pinkline)

 

Widen/Improve Existing (brown line)

Intersection/Interchange Improvement (intersection road sign)

Widen/Improve Existing (brown line)

Intersection/Interchange Improvement (Intersection road sign)

 

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Major Bridge/Tunnel Improvements

The Plan's major bridge/tunnel improvements layer contains "regionally significant" bridge/tunnel projects of two types: new bridges/tunnels & widening/improvement of existing bridges/tunnels.


Stylized shapes are used to represent New Bridge/Tunnel & Widening/Improvement project and are not alignments.

Bridge/Tunnel Improvement (dark blue line)

New Bridge/Tunnel (Light Blue Line)

Bridge/Tunnel Widening/Improvement
(dark blue line)

New Bridge/Tunnel
(light blue line)

 

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Major Transit Improvements

The Plan contains three types of transit projects: New Transit, Transit Improvements and New Transit Stations. Within the types of transit projects there is further categorization of projects into Fixed Guideway, Rail, or Ferry Transit project. New transit stations that are stand-alone projects are represented as full-sized train station signs. Projects for regular bus service , though a part of transit, is not represented within the visualization at this time, and will be available at a later time. 

Stylized shapes are used to represent transit projects and are not alignments.

New Fixed Guideway Transit (orange line with trolley marker)

New Rail Transit (orange line with rail marker)

New Ferry Transit (orange line with ferry marker)

New Fixed Guideway Transit
(orange line with trolley marker)

New Rail Transit
(orange line with rail marker)

New Ferry Transit
(orange line with ferry marker)

 

Rail Transit Improvement (light pink line w/rail marker)

New/Improved Transit Station (Train Station Symbol)

Rail Transit Improvement
(light pink line with rail marker)

New/Improved Transit Station
(Train Station symbol)

The Plan's major intermodal improvements layer contains "regionally significant" intermodal projects of two types: new intermodal & widening/improvement of existing intermodal facilities.

Stylized shapes are used to represent New Bridge/Tunnel & Widening/Improvement project and are not alignments.

New Intermodal Facility (light green line)

Intermodal Widening/Improvemtn (dark green line)

New Intermodal Facility
(light green line)

Intermodal Widening/Improvement
(dark green line)

 

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Major Bicycle and Pedestrian Projects

The Bicycle and Pedestrian plan components are currently under development for visualization via Google Earth and will be available at a future date.

 

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Launch Google Earth Visualization

By clicking the above link, you confirm that you have read the above instructions and caveats. You are also acknowledging that this is a test/beta version of the HRTPO 2034 LRTP Candidate Project Visualization. If you have problems launching Google Earth after clicking the above link, see the section below.

 

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