The Quarry

Employee Spotlight: Nathan Smith, Geospatial Services

Geospatial services provide the backbone for many of City of Round Rock’s essential services, from transportation to public safety and utilities. By leveraging geographic information systems (GIS), Round Rock officials can make data-driven decisions and enhance their ability to respond to the challenges that come with managing a growing city.

Nathan Smith, Geospatial Services Manager, leads the City’s GIS efforts as a member of Round Rock’s Information Technology Department. In his role, he finds new ways to improve residents’ quality of life through computer-based tools used to visualize, analyze and interpret geographic data. For instance, geospatial services can provide City leadership with valuable information about the city’s infrastructure, including buildings, roads and public transportation, as well as critical information to first responders, such as the location of fire hydrants.

The City of Round Rock houses one of the top public sector geographic information system (GIS) programs in North America, according to the 2022 Geospatial Maturity Index by PSD Citywide measuring maturity and performance among government organizations. Round Rock placed 12th overall and first among Texas cities. 

Examples of uses of City of Round Rock’s use of GIS include: 

  • A dashboard that helped the City’s Parks and Recreation Department navigate brush pickup requests that were made following Winter Storm Uri in February 2021, and another dashboard created for public information regarding brush pickup efforts following Winter Storm Mara in February 2023.
  • A real-time map of available parking in Downtown Round Rock.
  • A map following the March 2022 tornado that allowed building officials and public safety officials to log damage assessments and know if structures were deemed safe to enter.
  • A workbook that allows the Utilities and Environmental Services Department to analyze its work orders, requests, inspections and associated costs. 
  • A dashboard that allowed the Transportation Department to analyze the breakdown and cost of thousands of work orders.
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