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OCM Partners, 2023: 2010 ARRA Lidar: Golden Gate (CA),

Item Identification

Title: 2010 ARRA Lidar: Golden Gate (CA)
Short Name: ca2010_arra_goldengate_m5007_metadata
Status: Completed
Publication Date: 2016-03-11

The Golden Gate LiDAR Project is a cooperative project sponsored by the US Geological Survey (USGS) and San Francisco State University (SFSU) that has resulted in the collection and processing of high resolution 2 meter nominal pulse spacing or better LiDAR and meet objectives of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The DEM data generated from the LiDAR will be added to The National Map, a set of national geospatial datasets available to the public at no cost. During the summer of 2010, we acquired LiDAR data for the counties and parks of the Marin and San Francisco Peninsulas. SFSU's Romburh Tiburon Center for Environmental Sciences and the Hyperspectral-LiDAR Research Lab at the Univ. of Victoria has orthorectified aerial photography and hyperspectral imagery respectably.

The project extent is based upon the watershed boundaries for all watersheds that contain the lands of Marin County and San Francisco County. It also includes the watersheds that contain Point Reyes National Seashore and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The area of interest includes watersheds that are also located in southern Sonoma County and northern San Mateo County and when combined total ~835 square miles (planimetric estimate) of area (please refer to the map below). The project area includes the Marin Peninsula and San Francisco Peninsula that form the western edge of San Francisco Bay and San Pablo Bay. These peninsulas are north and south of the strait at the mouth of San Francisco Bay called the Golden Gate. This region is the northern part of the Central California coast.

3 data types: 1)Classified LAS v1.2, by 1500 meter x 1500 meter tile, 2)Classified LAS v1.2 tiles with buffered (1m) breaklines embedded, 3) Classified LAS v1.3 tiles with waveform.

These data are edited and classified as: 1 (unclassified) 2 (bare-earth, ground), 4 (vegetation), 7 (noise), 9 (water) designates water in the tiles with breaklines embedded. Noise was removed for OCM storage as it was deemed unnecessary upon review.


These lidar data were collected to support topographic and hydrologic mapping, floodplain analysis, structure extraction, and vegetative analysis. The purpose of this project was to produce a highly detailed and accurate map as a management tool.



Supplemental Information:

A report for this project is available at:

A footprint of this data set may be viewed in Google Earth at:


Theme Keywords

Thesaurus Keyword
ISO 19115 Topic Category

Physical Location

Organization: Office for Coastal Management
City: Charleston
State/Province: SC

Data Set Information

Data Set Scope Code: Data Set
Maintenance Frequency: As Needed
Entity Attribute Overview:

LAS 1.2 format (classes 1,2,4,9)

Entity Attribute Detail Citation:


Distribution Liability:

Any conclusions drawn from the analysis of this information are not the responsibility of SFSU, USGS, NOAA, the Office for Coastal Management or its partners.

Support Roles

Data Steward

CC ID: 670885
Date Effective From: 2016-03-11
Date Effective To:
Contact (Organization): NOAA Office for Coastal Management (NOAA/OCM)
Address: 2234 South Hobson Ave
Charleston, SC 29405-2413
Email Address:
Phone: (843) 740-1202


CC ID: 670887
Date Effective From: 2016-03-11
Date Effective To:
Contact (Organization): NOAA Office for Coastal Management (NOAA/OCM)
Address: 2234 South Hobson Ave
Charleston, SC 29405-2413
Email Address:
Phone: (843) 740-1202

Metadata Contact

CC ID: 670888
Date Effective From: 2016-03-11
Date Effective To:
Contact (Organization): NOAA Office for Coastal Management (NOAA/OCM)
Address: 2234 South Hobson Ave
Charleston, SC 29405-2413
Email Address:
Phone: (843) 740-1202

Point of Contact

CC ID: 670886
Date Effective From: 2016-03-11
Date Effective To:
Contact (Organization): NOAA Office for Coastal Management (NOAA/OCM)
Address: 2234 South Hobson Ave
Charleston, SC 29405-2413
Email Address:
Phone: (843) 740-1202


Currentness Reference: Ground Condition

Extent Group 1

Extent Group 1 / Geographic Area 1

CC ID: 1137598
W° Bound: -122.99431
E° Bound: -122.97722
N° Bound: 37.992654
S° Bound: 37.979133

Extent Group 1 / Time Frame 1

CC ID: 1137597
Time Frame Type: Range
Start: 2010-05-06
End: 2010-06-05

Spatial Information

Spatial Representation

Representations Used

Vector: Yes

Access Information

Security Class: Unclassified
Data Access Procedure:

This data can be obtained on-line at the following URL:

The data set is dynamically generated based on user-specified parameters.;

Data Access Constraints:


Data Use Constraints:

Users should be aware that temporal changes may have occurred since this data set was collected and some parts of this data may no longer represent actual surface conditions. Users should not use this data for critical applications without a full awareness of its limitations. These data depict the heights at the time of the survey and are only accurate for that time.

Distribution Information

Distribution 1

CC ID: 740489
Download URL:
File Name: Customized Download

Create custom data files by choosing data area, product type, map projection, file format, datum, etc.

Distribution 2

CC ID: 740490
Download URL:
File Name: Bulk Download

Simple download of data files.



CC ID: 740492
URL Type:
Online Resource


CC ID: 740493
URL Type:
Online Resource


CC ID: 740494
Name: Browse Graphic
URL Type:
Browse Graphic
File Resource Format: kmz

This graphic shows the lidar coverage for the 2010 ARRA Golden Gate project area.

Activity Log

Activity Log 1

CC ID: 670911
Activity Date/Time: 2017-03-20

Date that the source FGDC record was last modified.

Activity Log 2

CC ID: 670910
Activity Date/Time: 2017-11-14

Converted from FGDC Content Standards for Digital Geospatial Metadata (version FGDC-STD-001-1998) using '' script. Contact Tyler Christensen (NOS) for details.

Activity Log 3

CC ID: 718182
Activity Date/Time: 2018-02-08

Partial upload of Positional Accuracy fields only.

Activity Log 4

CC ID: 740491
Activity Date/Time: 2018-03-13

Partial upload to move data access links to Distribution Info.

Data Quality

Horizontal Positional Accuracy:

Horizontal accuracy is to be suitable for use with map scales up to of 1:4000.; Quantitative Value: 1 meters, Test that produced the value: No horizontal accuracy tested, assuming to be at least 1 m

Vertical Positional Accuracy:

Data over well-defined surfaces has been tested to meet a 18.13 cm Fundamental Vertical Accuracy (FVA) at 95% confidence level using RMSE(z) x 1.9600 as defined by the National Standards for Spatial Data Accuracy (NSSDA); assessed and reported using National Digital Elevation Program (NDEP)/ASRPS Guidelines. Once all lifts were horizontally and vertically calibrated, the vertical misalignment between each lift was checked so that all lifts are aligned and the entire data set matched the ground control points within the project specified accuracy range. A final vertical accuracy check was run against the control after the z correction. The result was analyzed against the project specified accuracy to make sure it meet the requirement.; Quantitative Value: 0.0925 meters, Test that produced the value: Collected to meet 9.25 cm RMSE Vertical Accuracy though SFSU did not acquire independent check points to test vertical accuracy. This data will still be accepted as per direction of SFSU's Teresa Dean on 02/06/2012. In the SFSU_LiDAR_Project_Report, SFSU reported vertical accuracy by adjusting 47 ground control points to the finished product.

Completeness Report:

A visual qualitative assessment was performed to ensure data completeness and full tiles. No void or missing data exists.

Conceptual Consistency:

Data covers the tile scheme provided for the project area.


Process Steps

Process Step 1

CC ID: 1137593

Sensor data collected for this project include simultaneous capture of LiDAR, multi-spectral (color), and hyperspectral imagery for the San Francisco State University LiDAR project. The project area includes 835 sq miles in Marin and San Francisco counties, Point Reyes National Seashore, the Golden Gate National Recreation Area as well as portions of San Mateo and Sonoma Counties. The data were delivered in the UTM coordinate system, meters, zone 10 north, horizontal datum NAD83, vertical datum NGVD88, via 1500 x 1500 meter tiles.

All sensors were installed together in a Cessna 207 aircraft. The LiDAR sensor used was a Leica ALS60 MPiA(multi-pulse in air) sensor collecting multiple return x, y, and z data, full

wave form data as well as intensity data. The LiDAR data acquisition plan was developed to support a nominal post spacing of 2 pts/sq meter at 15 percent side-lap with 28 degree FOV to support a 1 foot contour accuracy with waveform data included. The aircraft speed was 120 kts, and flight altitude 8500 ft aMSL. The base station equipment used was a Trimble R7 with a Zephyr geodetic model 2 antenna. The control points were collected with a Trimble R8 integrated receiver and antenna unit. The calibration process considered all errors inherent with the equipment including errors in GPS, IMU, and sensor specific parameters. Adjustments were made to achieve a flight line to flight line data match (relative calibration) and subsequently adjusted to control for absolute accuracy.

Compliance with the accuracy standard was ensured through the collection of GPS ground control during the acquisition of aerial LiDAR and the establishment of a GPS base station operating at the airport (Figure 2). In addition to the base station, CORS bases may have been used to supplement the solutions. The following criteria were adhered to during control point collection.

1. Each point was collected during periods of very low less than 2 PDOP. 2. No point was collected with a base line greater than 25 miles. 3. Each point was collected at a place of constant slope so as to minimize any errors introduced through LiDAR triangulation. 4. Each point was collected at moderate intensity surfaces so any intensity based anomalies could be avoided.

Process Date/Time: 2010-07-01 00:00:00

Process Step 2

CC ID: 1137594

The following methods were used to ensure LiDAR accuracy:

1. Rigorous LiDAR calibration: all sources of error such as the sensor's ranging and torsion parameters, atmospheric variables, GPS conditions, and IMU offsets were analyzed and removed to the highest level possible. This method addresses all errors, both vertical and horizontal in nature. Ranging, atmospheric variables, and GPS conditions affect the vertical position of the surface, whereas IMU offsets and torsion parameters affect the data horizontally. The horizontal accuracy is proven through repeatability: when the position of features remains constant no matter what direction the plane was flying and no matter where the feature is positioned within the swath, relative horizontal accuracy is achieved.

2. Absolute horizontal accuracy is achieved through the use of differential GPS with base lines shorter than 25 miles. The base station is set at a temporary monument that is 'tied-in' to the CORS network. The same position is used for every lift, ensuring that any errors in its position will affect all data equally and can therefore be removed equally. The auto-classification or 'filtering' step was performed with TerraScan to create a bare earth ground model and building classification by comparing each point's relationship with its neighbors. Algorithms consider lope, angular relationships and distance in its computations which were successful in accurately defining he ground in at least 95% of the project area.

An additional automated ground classification pass was made on the original TerraScan generated ground class (2) points to improve the quality of the points representing the ground. This was done since a significant amount of vegetation and building footprints existed in the original ground class. More than 10% of the original ground classified points were reclassified. However, this did soften the edges in terrain with very rapidly changing slope and reduced the ground point density in areas with above ground vegetation.

Manual editing of the ground class (2) was done after filtering to reclassify the remaining below ground noise blunders, the remaining buildings and the most obvious remaining near ground vegetation. Ground points were manually added back in for selected coastal cliffs, large offshore rocks and large land rock outcrops in Marin County. While this manual editing was systematic and purposeful, it may have inadvertently missed some details. Manual editing to classify noise (7) in the point cloud was done to minimize the significant amount of noise points that remained in the other classes after the original vendor provided TerraScan classification. The noise points were often mostly associated with reflective surfaces in city, urban and around water. A tile by tile effort eliminated essentially all significant high and below ground noise points. Another pass eliminated the majority of the close-in noise near structures, vegetation, roads and water.

Process Date/Time: 2010-07-01 00:00:00

Process Step 3

CC ID: 1137595

The NOAA Office for Coastal Management (OCM) received the files in laz format from USGS via an FTP online repository. The files contained lidar elevation and intensity measurements. The data were in State Plane California Zone 3 and Zone 4, NAVD88 (orthometric) heights in meters. The California Coastal Project was divided into two projects: State Plane Zone 3 and State Plane Zone 4 respectively. OCM performed the following processing for data storage and Digital Coast provisioning purposes:

1. The data were converted from state plane coordinates to geographic coordinates.

2. The data were converted from NAVD88 (orthometric) heights in meters to GRS80 (ellipsoid) heights in meters using Geoid 09.

3. The LAS Noise class was dropped and Class 4 (medium vegetation scrutinized). All Class 4 points are considered to include all vegetation and man-made objects.

Process Date/Time: 2016-02-10 00:00:00

Catalog Details

Catalog Item ID: 49640
GUID: gov.noaa.nmfs.inport:49640
Metadata Record Created By: Anne Ball
Metadata Record Created: 2017-11-15 15:21+0000
Metadata Record Last Modified By: SysAdmin InPortAdmin
Metadata Record Last Modified: 2022-08-09 17:11+0000
Metadata Record Published: 2022-03-16
Owner Org: OCMP
Metadata Publication Status: Published Externally
Do Not Publish?: N
Metadata Last Review Date: 2022-03-16
Metadata Review Frequency: 1 Year
Metadata Next Review Date: 2023-03-16