GfK GeoMarketing has released expanded digital maps of Canada’s postal and administrative levels as well as twelve topographic maps. Together the maps of Canada comprise a cartographic basis for regional analyses, such as risk assessment. The maps also support a full range of spatial analyses, from marketing and sales territory planning to logistics and expansion planning.
GfK GeoMarketing has completely overhauled and expanded its digital maps for Canada. The new map edition provides comprehensive and detailed cartographic coverage of the country’s administrative and postal boundaries in addition to topographic details.
"The impetus for the map update was a large reinsurance company that wanted more detailed maps and geodata for Canada for the purpose of risk assessment," explains Klaus Dittmann, head of cartography at GfK GeoMarketing. "Our geodata makes it possible precisely locate and analyze insured objects and thus bring greater transparency to the associated risks. This is of paramount importance in the reinsurance industry as well as all other branches and applications that involve the analysis of regional markets. Whether this geodata is used for cartographic illustrations or to facilitate geocoding in a databank application, GfK GeoMarketing’s new maps of Canada provide detailed, comprehensive coverage of the country’s postal and administrative boundaries and therefore serve as a reliable foundation for any analyses with a place-based component."
Like all digital maps produced by GfK GeoMarketing, the new GfK Canada Map Edition is available in the standard digital map formats, including *.shp (ESRI), *.mid/*.mif (MapInfo), *.gdb (Geodatabase) and *.lay (GfK GeoMarketing). The maps are also available in the Oracle (Spatial) database format for use in Oracle Business Intelligence applications.
- The map edition contains a completely new map of Canada’s 293 "census divisions", which comprise the country’s second-largest administrative level. The largest administrative level corresponds to the provinces, which have also been newly digitized in the recently released maps.
- A postal reform in recent years has led to changes to Canada’s 3-digit postcode boundaries. Twenty-four new postcodes have been added, resulting in a total of 1,635 three-digit postcodes. These postcode regions have codes ranging from A0A to Y1A and are referred to as "FSAs" (forward sortation areas). In rural regions, the second unit of the FSA code is always 0, while it ranges from 1-9 in cities. "Thanks to newer and better sources, we were able to digitize the 3-digit postcodes even more precisely than in the previous map edition," explains Dittmann.
- The topographic layers have been completely redigitized and enhanced with additional cartographic details such as airports and more precisely rendered bodies of water. The maps also offer a very detailed depiction of coastlines. This is particularly important in the case of usage by the insurance and reinsurance industries.
- The number of included cities has substantially increased to almost 25,000. All cities featured in the new maps have been classified according to GfK GeoMarketing’s six city size categories. The new map edition also features more detailed coverage of streets, which are grouped into three categories.
- The new map edition features postal boundaries that match perfectly with the included streets. This means that the various thematic map layers can be seamlessly overlaid. Digital maps are structured according to a layering principle: Maps of regions are placed on the bottom, such as maps of postcode or municipalities; area-based elements such as bodies of water come next; finally, maps with point or line objects – such as cities and streets – are placed on top. It’s essential that these various map layers can be stacked seamlessly. However, this poses a certain challenge to cartographers, because the various layers must be created as separate maps in order to ensure that each layer can be individually edited by the user.
Data basis and scope
All 15 maps in the new Canada Map Edition 2011 have been completely redigitized using the latest data sources – primarily official data and satellite imagery. The accuracy of the maps in urban areas corresponds to a scale of 1:10,000, while polar regions are depicted at 1:500,000. The map edition includes two administrative maps ("provinces" and "census divisions"), a postcode map (3-digit postcodes / "forward sortation areas") and a total of 12 topographic maps featuring city points (organized into six size categories), airports, bodies of water (rivers and lakes) as well as three street maps (highways, major roads, freeways).
Coverage and quality
GfK GeoMarketing’s map editions feature comprehensive coverage, seamlessly fitting and overlap-free boundaries, national and local place-name attributions and infinite zoom capability. With coverage of more than 240 countries, GfK GeoMarketing offers the world’s largest collection of digital administrative and postcode maps, available in all standard data formats for maps and databank applications.
on the digital maps for Canada can be found at www.gfk-geomarketing.com/canada.