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Austin’s GIS mapping decoded

Did you know the city and county provide interactive GIS maps of Austin to connect you to resources and help you get to know your communities?

View of the Austin, Texas skyline from the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail.

Get to know your community through interactive maps.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Ever wish you had a map that highlighted hiking trails in city limits? Or maybe you want to visually see where local libraries and early voting polls are located.

Look no further, Austin. Meet GIS mapping — a resource used by the city, local organizations, and passionate residents to help discover data about places in our community.

What is GIS?

GIS (geographic information system) is a tool for gathering, managing, and analyzing data. Maps are created through GIS software (like ArcGIS, Google Earth + more) to analyze physical locations and organize layers of info into visualizations in the form of maps and 3D scenes. Simply put, really cool virtually-layered maps.

How is it used locally?

The City of Austin maintains several websites dedicated to GIS. This treasure trove features maps of public parks + trails, watersheds, flooding zones, power outages, and more. This page gets you maps of bike routes, sidewalk program projects, and Austin Police Department district reps. Zooming out, Travis County offers a robust collection of GIS maps spanning infrastructure, natural resources, and emergency services.

Our picks

Ready to explore? Here are few GIS maps we think you’ll enjoy:

  • Interactive Parks Map | Use the filter at the bottom or search function on the top right to pinpoint local playgrounds + parks, hiking trails, softball and baseball fields, pickleball courts, and shade structures.
  • Austin Bike Routes | Before you take that next ride, hop on this map to find all kinds of biking paths — including “high-comfort routes” with low motor-vehicle speeds and paved trails.
  • Council District Map | Explore the boundaries of the 10-member council districts that make up Austin; here are some tips for searching by address.

Which maps are you most excited to use?