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Virginia base mapping program: 2006/2007 Orthophotography

Attention: The new 2006-07 imagery is only available to Virginia Tech students and faculty/staff. In the Spring of 2008, the library acquired the digital orthophotography and digital terrain model for the entire Commonwealth and made it available through the University Libraries GIS Data Unit.

Virginia Tech libraries have these statewide products:

  • 1:2,400 scale (1 resolution) over the entire Commonwealth
  • 1:1,200 scale (1/2 resolution) in areas where localities chose the option to purchase higher accuracy product
  • Digital Terrain Models in Microstation dgn format
  • 2 or 4 foot contours for select areas in ESRI Personal Geodatabase format
  • Building planimetrics for select areas in ESRI Personal Geodatabase format

Information and description of the these products, examples of the imagery and indexes can be accessed from the  Virginia Geospatial services page.

To acquire the new imagery, the following steps should be taken:

  1. Email Ed Brooks (GIS Coordinator) with the location for the imagery needed. A printout from Google, Yahoo or Microsoft Maps is adequate in most cases. Or if you are not sure, set up a appointment to meet. My office is located in Newman Library, 2nd Floor, Room 2030. Depending on the size of your area, I can usually have the imagery to you the same day.
  2. Download either the student or faculty/staff "VBMP Educational License Agreement" form. Fill the form out and make sure it's signed, students should have their professor sign as well.
  3. Setup a appointment with Bruce Obenhaus (Map librarian) at 540-231-6181. Give Bruce the signed form. Bruce will go over the the copyright issues and hand you the imagery.

The State of Virginia has made the 2002 imagery free to the public. This imagery can be downloaded from these sites:

The Virginia Base Mapping Program (VBMP) first acquired full color, leaf-off, aerial photography of the state during the spring of 2002 and recently updated the imagery with flights during 2006 and 2007.

The orthophotography program was established to promote effective and economically efficient development and sharing of spatial resources across the Commonwealth. The Virginia Base Mapping Program (VBMP) first acquired aerial photography of the state during the spring of 2002 and recently updated the imagery with flights during 2006 and 2007. Approximately 15% of the State was acquired in the year 2006 and the balance in 2007.

Each locality was then offered the opportunity to upgrade to two additional products. They could choose to add contours or building planimetrics. The resolution of the upgrades was dependent on the resolution of the orthophotography chosen.


Maps Librarian

GIS specialist

  • Ed Brooks
  • GIS Specialist
  • 540-231-9225
  • gisdata@vt.edu
  • Newman Library room 2030
    560 Drillfield Drive
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

Data request form

Newman Library fall hours

Sun: open 9:00am*
Mon-Thu: open 24 hours*
Fri: close 8:00pm
Sat: 9:00am - 8:00pm

* During 24 hour operation, a valid Hokie Passport is required to access or remain in the library between 12 midnight and 7:30am.

Current semester hours