3D Elevation Program (3DEP)

3D Elevation Program Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) 2019 Awards


The U.S. Geological Survey’s National Geospatial Program is pleased to announce awards resulting from the USGS Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) for the 3D Elevation Program (3DEP), initially issued on September 17, 2018. (SAM.gov 140G0118R0037 ||  Grants.gov: G18AS00078)

The BAA is a publicly accessible process to develop partnerships for the collection of lidar and derived elevation data for 3DEP. 3DEP presents a unique opportunity for collaboration between all levels of government, to leverage the services and expertise of private sector mapping firms that acquire the data, and to create jobs now and in the future.

3D Elevation Program - Map illustration showing Fiscal Year 19 Broad Agency Announcement Partnerships as of August 2019

Map shows extent of awarded projects from 3DEP FY19 Broad Agency Announcement as of August 2019. Click to enlarge map.

​​​​​​​(Credit: Diana Thunen, USGS. Public domain.)

The USGS, along with other federal, state, local, and private agencies, has established the collection program to respond to the growing needs for high-quality, three-dimensional mapping data of the United States. Current and accurate 3D elevation data are essential to help communities cope with natural hazards and disasters such as floods and landslides, support infrastructure management, ensure agricultural success, strengthen environmental decision-making and bolster national security. Federal funds to support this opportunity our provided by the USGS, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The USGS is acting in a management role to facilitate planning and acquisition for the broader community, through the use of government contracts and partnership agreements.


Project Awards

In 2019, the 3DEP program offered partnership funding to 34 proposals in 22 States and Territories.


List View

3DEP Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) FY19 Awards List



AK- Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve and Gustavus, Alaska Coastal Lidar Acquisition from Alsek River East to Excursion Inlet:

From tidewater glaciers to salmon streams fished by bears, Glacier Bay delights global visitors. Our data to manage the land and maintain infrastructure leaves us hobbled in a dynamic landscape. Acquiring lidar in the most visited park areas and the gateway community of Gustavus will improve our response to incidents, management of geospatial datasets, planning for our future, and learning from our past. Our settled areas in Gustavus, Bartlett Cove, and Dry Bay are flat with temperate rainforest vegetation warranting QL1 to best plan roads, drainage, and other infrastructure. The balance of the QL2 acquisition is our coastal fringe and islands and the Alsek River corridor where visitors frequent. Our coast is so poorly mapped that we lack a vector line; NOAA charts can be miles off, and USGS topographic maps omit islands. Lidar will improve management of resources for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of current and future generations.     


AK - Matanuska - Susitna Borough Lidar Project:

The Matanuska-Susitna Borough (MSB) 2019 Lidar Project covers over 1,080 square-miles in the south central portion of the MSB. It includes the populated areas of Point MacKenzie, Knik, Big Lake, Houston, Wasilla, Palmer, Butte, Sutton, Chickaloon, Glacier View, and Eureka, areas that have experienced significant population and landscape changes since 2011 (our last lidar collection); The lidar will support upcoming projects, such as the Port MacKenzie rail corridor, all projects in the MSB 2018 road bond package, and 19 projects in the Alaska 2018-2121 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).


AL - North Alabama Lidar Project:

The North Alabama Lidar Project will result in new high-resolution lidar data for the fastest growing region in the state of Alabama. The project area includes the entirety of Madison County and portions of bordering counties which have experienced significant change since the last elevation datasets were collected between 2010-2012 at QL3. Due to North Alabama’s position as the epicenter for aerospace and defense research and development, this USGS project  will directly support national defense programs and initiatives.


AZ - Coconino County, Mormon Lake Region QL1 Lidar Project:

Coconino County is planning to acquire QL1 lidar for the Mormon Lake area and surrounding region. The project area is approximately 240 square miles located 25 miles south of Flagstaff Arizona in Central Coconino County. This project will help further assist the County’s risk mitigation efforts and support timber, wildfire and forest planning efforts.


AZ - Coconino National Forest QL1 Lidar Project:

The Coconino National Forest is planning to acquire QL1 lidar through the Ponderosa pine belt near Flagstaff and extending towards the edge of the Mogollon Rim. This project will help inform archaeology, timber, wildfire, hydrological modeling, transportation systems, and forest planning efforts.


AZ - Kaibab National Forest, North Kaibab Ranger District QL1 Lidar Project:

The Kaibab National Forest is planning to acquire QL1 lidar for the North Kaibab Ranger District. The North Kaibab Ranger District is located north of the Grand Canyon in Arizona. This project will help inform archaeology, timber, wildfire and forest planning efforts.


AZ - Grand Canyon National Park, QL1 Lidar Project, Above Rim:

Grand Canyon National Park is planning to acquire up to 347 square miles of QL1 lidar for the portion of the Kaibab Plateau and the South Rim within the Park boundary. This project will help inform archaeology, fisheries, hydrology, habitat, wildfire, infrastructure, and other resource planning efforts.


AZ - Grand Canyon National Park, QL1 Lidar Project, Below Rim:

Grand Canyon National Park is planning to acquire 100 square miles of QL1 lidar for priority inner canyon watersheds within Grand Canyon and adjacent to the Kaibab Plateau. This project will help inform archaeology, fisheries, hydrology, habitat, wildfire, infrastructure, and other resource planning efforts.


CA - QL1 Lidar for the Carr, Hirz, and Delta Fire Impacted Watersheds:

The Carr, Hirz, and Delta fires burned approximately 340,000 acres across the Trinity, Shasta, and Upper Sacramento River watersheds in the summer of 2018. The recently burned areas present significant concerns for public safety, forest management, infrastructure maintenance, and water resource management. These burned areas also highlight the importance of high resolution bare earth elevations, infrastructure and structural, and vegetation or forest structure data for unburned areas across the state. The region contains multiple communities, infrastructure, and other resources at risk from wildfires and related hazards. QL1 lidar will supported improved resource management for emergency planning, event response, hazard mitigation, restoration and recovery, and natural resource management.


CA - QL1 Lidar for Upper South Fork American River, California:

The proposed lidar acquisition is part of ongoing efforts by the California Geological Survey (CGS) to better understand the effects of timber management and wildfire on slope stability in general and specifically in the landslide-prone canyon of the South Fork of the American River in the Sierra Nevada. Research partners for the project include the Eldorado National Forest and the California Board of Forestry. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) operates a real-time landslide monitoring station within the AOI.


CA - Baseline Lidar Imagery Acquisition for the Riverside East Solar Energy ​​​​​​​Development Focus Area, Eastern Riverside County, CA - Phase II:

The Bureau of Land Management seeks baseline lidar data for its public lands in California that are classified as Development Focus Areas for renewable energy production and transmission. Data from this effort will assist the BLM, energy developers, public utility corporations, and state and federal energy agencies to plan, site, design, and construct least-cost, least-impact installations and to monitor environmental changes to surrounding non-developed areas. The baseline will also serve as a reference for site restoration to natural conditions in the event of decommissioning installations.


CO - Lidar Acquisition for Portions of Montrose, Delta, Gunnison, Pitkin and Chaffee Counties:

A multi-agency coalition, consisting of the The Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB), City of Montrose, and Gunnison County, is using matching funds from the USGS 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) to collect lidar over a large portion of south central Colorado. These multiple agencies and partners will use the high-resolution data to support debris flow and flood hazard mapping, land management, forest and agricultural planning, infrastructure and development planning, and energy applications.The 3DEP matching funds will allow lidar collection over key areas of Colorado that will support efforts to provide critical natural hazard information for local governments to make better land use decisions and for state and federal agencies to design and planning purposes to the natural resources in Colorado.


GA - State of Georgia FY19 3DEP Project:

The Georgia Lidar Program, led by the Georgia Geospatial Information Office (GIO), has entered a cost-sharing partnership with the USGS, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Environmental Protection Division, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Georgia to acquire highly-accurate elevation data for 31 of the state’s 159 counties. The 31 counties acquired through this partnership mark the completion of a lidar portfolio that covers the entire state with in-progress or existing QL2 or better lidar. Not only does this acquisition support local, regional, and state government, but it has also been identified as a critical resource by federal partners who manage programs within the State.  It is estimated that through the 3DEP program, Georgia will see an annual cost savings of roughly $8.5M as the program enables large-scale lidar acquisitions, maintenance, and hosting, which is spearheaded by the GIO. This data is used extensively to support planning, development, and natural resources management across the state and its coastal zones.


IA - Iowa Statewide Lidar Acquisition 2019:

The Iowa USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in cooperation with the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS), and the USGS 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) will acquire lidar data for approximately 14,750 square miles in Eastern Iowa. This will include 24 counties bordering the Mississippi River.


ID - South Fork Salmon River Watershed, Payette National Forest 2019 Lidar Project:

The USGS and the USDA Forest Service (USFS), Intermountain Region (R4) will collaborate to acquire high resolution digital elevation data developed from airborne lidar. Lidar data planned and funded to be acquired by FEMA in 2019 for Adams County, Idaho will be upgraded by the USFS from Quality Level 2 (QL2) to QL1 for Payette National Forest lands within Adams County. However, areas of existing 2017 lidar coverage on the Payette National Forest will not be included as part of the upgrade. In addition, a small area in Idaho County adjacent to the northeast corner of Adams County will be acquired as new QL1 data. The lidar will provide high resolution geospatial data for several applications such as resource management and conservation planning, engineering design and design reviews, geologic hazard mitigation, hydrologic modeling, and flood risk management. In addition, the lidar will benefit programs involving forest inventory and assessment, wildfire planning and response, watershed assessment and wildlife habitat management. The lidar data products resulting from this project will be used for assessing current forest conditions, prioritizing and managing forest restoration treatments designed to restore forest resiliency and sustainability, and provide a baseline for future monitoring efforts.


IL - Northwest Illinois Counties plus Champaign County Lidar Project:

The 8 counties in northwest Illinois, Jo Daviess, Stephenson, Carroll, Ogle, Whiteside, Lee, Rock Island, and Henry and Champaign County in east central Illinois, were among the first counties collected, prior to release of USGS Lidar Base Specification Version 1.0. This project seeks to update lidar products for these 9 counties to USGS Lidar Base Specification Version 1.3. The project also seeks to acquire enhanced point density (4 PPSM) and automated point classifications for vegetation for the entire 9 county project area. Automated building classification for the areal extent of Champaign County and higher point densification (QL1 - 8 PPSM) for the metropolitan region of Champaign-Urbana are also included in the awarded project.


KY - Kentucky From Above: 2019 Lidar Acquisition:

The 2019 KY From Above acquisition effort will reacquire lidar data for counties that were previously collected during the 2010-2012 timeframe. Reacquisition of data for this area will ensure that it meets the current USGS Base LIdar Specifications, collected to the QL2 accuracy specifications. The data will be leveraged by the KY Division of Water to improve floodplain delineations, perform inundation studies, and conduct dam breach analysis with the area of interest. All collected data will be shared across state government and in the public domain where it brings value to a wide array of business processes.


MS - NRCS Mississippi QL2 East 2019:

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Mississippi’s goal is to acquire Quality Level 2 (QL2) lidar for the entire state. This project will enable Mississippi to have statewide QL2 lidar coverage for the first time. For the past seven years, NRCS has been working toward this goal and has utilized the USGS GPSC vehicle to facilitate our objectives. NRCS has been working closely with U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to optimize the cost benefit ratio for our QL2 products. Large contiguous projects have allowed our unit cost to be significantly lower than the average 3DEP QL2 estimates. The project consists of updating existing lower quality QL3 data.


MT - Montana Statewide Lidar Plan - Phase 1:

The Montana Statewide Lidar Plan- Phase I proposal prioritizes completing counties with partial coverage and counties that fill gaps in existing coverage. Funds requested from 3DEP will be  complete coverage at QL2 in 3 counties: Powder River, Custer, and Granite. Partners include the MT DNRC, MT NRCS, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, and the Montana State Library.


NH - Next Generation Lidar for Coastal NH:

Acquisition of tide-coordinated QL1 data for the Seacoast Region of New Hampshire will result in the availability of a statewide lidar dataset that is QL2 or better, fulfilling a longstanding goal of the GIS community and its many stakeholders. This portion of the state encompasses most of the inland areas that drain directly to the state’s 18 miles of Atlantic coastline, including the ecologically sensitive and economically important Great Bay Estuary. This watershed continues to experience higher rates of population and economic growth than other regions of the state. The data will be of critical importance in helping local and regional planners to meet the challenges posed by increasing development pressures and to assess and mitigate the effects of increased river flooding and sea level rise.


NY - Erie, Genesee and Livingston Counties, New York Lidar Update:

Lidar at USGS QL2 will be collected for all of Erie and Livingston Counties and most of Genesee County in New York State, covering nearly 2,200 square miles. This will update lidar coverage in all 3 counties. The area is part of the drainage into Lakes Erie and Ontario. The planned collection area has been designed to overlap existing lidar datasets and with ongoing FEMA projects, to maximize utility, and to prepare for future collections in adjacent areas.


OH - Ohio Statewide 3D Elevation Program - Phase 1:

The Ohio Statewide 3DEP Acquisition 2019-2021 project is a multi-year project to acquire QL1 lidar for 41,276 square miles of territory for the entire state of Ohio. The project addresses several mission-critical functions identified in the National Enhanced Elevation Assessment supporting the efforts of the contributing partners to study and develop programs for natural resource conservation, agriculture and precision farming, flood risk management planning and response, water supply and quality, wildlife management, and river and stream resource management. The data developed and the information derived from this project will have far reaching benefits beyond those identified by the contributing partners.


OH - City of Columbus, Ohio 2019 3D Elevation Program:

The 2019 Columbus 3DEP Acquisition Project is a single-year project to acquire QL0 lidar for 680 square miles of terrestrial lidar for the entire City of Columbus Service Area. The City Service Area encompases all of Franklin County and portions of Delaware, Licking, Fairfield, Pickaway and Union Counties. The project addresses several mission-critical functions, including but not limited to: preliminary engineering, planning, and economic development. The data developed and the information derived from this project will have far reaching benefits beyond those identified above.


OR- OLC Metro 3DEP 2019:

Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) would like to propose the Oregon Lidar Consortium (OLC) Metro 3DEP 2019 project that will collect 760 sq. miles of Quality Level 1 3DEP lidar in the metropolitan region of Portland, Oregon. The OLC Metro 3DEP 2019 project will provide updated lidar data for Oregon’s largest city. The lidar data collected in 2019 will be used to conduct detailed change analysis from other lidar collections in the past. Additionally the new QL1 data will be used to improve hydrologic modeling and land use planning in the Portland region.


OR - 2019 Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest QL1 Lidar Project:

Located in southwestern Oregon and extending into California, the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest extends from the crest of the Cascade Range, west into the Siskiyou Mountains, and nearly to the Pacific Ocean. The forest covers almost 1.8 million acres across portions of the complex Applegate and Illinois watersheds, where the Rogue River drains over 75 percent of the forest’s land area. The Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest is characterized by complex soils and geology, diverse plant communities, numerous wild and scenic rivers, fisheries and wildlife resources. The information gained from lidar is changing the way land management agencies and partners understand dynamic processes and manage the landscape. It is improving decision-making and the way we do business by furthering our understanding of hydrology, geologic processes, climate, tree canopy structure, forest restoration, roads and infrastructure, and general morphology.


OR - OLC South Coast 3DEP 2019:

The Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) would like to propose the Oregon Lidar Consortium (OLC) South Coast 3DEP 2019 project that will collect Quality Level 1 3DEP lidar in the Rogue River‐Siskiyou National Forest of Oregon. The OLC South Coast 3DEP 2019 project will expand lidar coverage in the Coastal Range of southern Oregon without lidar coverage. The lidar data will be used to address base layer data gaps related to hydrologic modeling, watershed restoration planning and large scale landslide mapping within Curry and Josephine Counties. The lidar collection will also cover 84% (253 sq. miles out of 300 sq. miles) of the 2017 Chetco‐Bar burn area, which will be used for post‐fire debris flow modeling and assist with watershed restoration projects that are currently underway in Curry and Josephine Counties.


PA - QL2 Lidar Coverage for Pennsylvania:

Five partner state agencies (DCNR, PEMA, DEP, PennDOT, Turnpike Commission) and the Susquehanna River Basin Commission propose to collect QL2 lidar data for a block of 22 counties in eastern and central Pennsylvania (PA). This will complete QL2 lidar collection for approximately the eastern two-thirds of PA. The collection proposed herein will replace QL3 data collected during 2006-2008 under the PAMAP program (administered by DCNR). The proposed area overlaps with and is adjacent to areas identified as Federal priorities in BAA Attachments F, G, and H. Federal agencies with particular interest in the area are FEMA and NRCS. Critical needs for this data collection include updating hydrography datasets, statewide change detection, identification and mitigation of flood hazards, infrastructure development, and landslide and sinkhole hazard analysis.


SC-South Carolina Lidar Update - Savannah River to the Pee Dee and Appalachian to Atlantic Region:

This is a cooperative effort to update, capture and distribute QL2 lidar data for 28 South Carolina counties. The project area encompasses a diversity of geographies, hundreds of watersheds, major interstate corridors, major water bodies, urban and rural populations, and elevation changes from coastal plains and marshes to the lower Appalachian Mountains. South Carolina is annually threatened and impacted by hurricanes,both inland and along the coast. Coupled with the rise in population and increased frequency of major weather events, better quality elevation data is vital to assessing and protecting vulnerable areas for emergency management and disaster mitigation.


TN - West Tennessee Lidar Project:

The West Tennessee Lidar Project will produce lidar data for 16 counties in West Tennessee. Funding for this project is coming from the Tennessee Department of Transportation, USDA/NRCS, Tennessee Valley Authority, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and USGS. This project will benefit all levels of government in support of land management, flood plain mapping, forest inventory, economic development, transportation planning, ortho photography processing, and environmental management.


VA - City of Williamsburg Lidar Project:

Virginia proposes to have high accuracy lidar elevation data (quality Level 2) collected for the City of Williamsburg in Virginia. This is an adjacent locality to the existing USGS VA Upper Middle Neck project currently funded through the 3DEP Program.  Acquiring 3DEP quality elevation data products in Williamsburg will play a vital role in floodplain management, transportation planning, conservation of land, erosion and sediment control, and water quality preservation and improvement for waters flowing into the James and York Rivers. 


VA - Henrico County Lidar Project:

Virginia proposes to have high accuracy lidar elevation data (quality Level 2) collected for Henrico County in Virginia. This is an adjacent locality to the existing USGS VA Upper Middle Neck project currently funded  through the 3DEP Program. Replacing the 2014 inaccurate James River Lidar with 3DEP quality elevation data products in Henrico County plays a vital role in protecting Virginia residents from flooding, aiding transportation planning, conserving soils, and in improving the quality of waters flowing into the Chickahominy and James Rivers.


WA - 2019 Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest QL1 Lidar Project:

The information gained from light detection and ranging (lidar) is changing the way land management agencies, stakeholders, and partners understand dynamic processes and manage the landscape. It is improving decision-making and the way we do business by furthering our understanding of hydrology, geologic processes, climate, tree canopy structure, forest restoration, roads and infrastructure, and general morphology.  The purpose of this 3DEP proposal is for the 2019 leaf-off collection of 344 square miles of QL1 lidar on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest in north central Washington. This area constitutes a large part of the Okanogan-Wenatchee and will fill in an existing lidar data gap, thereby also contributing to the 3DEP effort of nationwide baseline lidar coverage and provide unprecedented geospatial information to all stakeholders and partners.  This also supports the Forest Service Pacific Northwest Region goal of complete regional national forest, national scenic area, national monument, and national grassland lidar coverage. This proposal is also intended to complement a 2019 3DEP BAA awarded proposal for an adjacent area in Washington submitted by the Washington Department of National Resources (WA DNR). Combining this proposed project with the WA DNR project will promote increased economy of scale as well as lidar collection, processing, and contracting efficiency.


WA - The Washington Eastern Cascades QL1 Lidar Project:

The Washington Eastern Cascades QL1 Lidar Project aims to fill large lidar coverage gaps, refresh outdated coverage, and align with current collection projects to complete a consistent lidar dataset for Yakima, Kittitas, and Chelan Counties. This effort will deliver critical information to support geologic hazards, wildfire hazards, flood mapping, forest health and management, water conservation and quality concerns, and salmon and wildlife habitat. This project also comprises the first phase of a multiyear lidar collection plan, formed in conjunction with state, local, tribal, and federal agencies to complete lidar coverage for the state of Washington.


WI - Wisconsin Statewide Lidar Data Collection:

The Wisconsin Land Information Program (WLIP) in cooperation with 3DEP will continue its goal to complete QL2 lidar statewide. In 2019 Wisconsin will acquire QL2 lidar data for five Wisconsin counties. The project area directly overlaps with NRCS and FEMA priority areas for data collection. Together with FEMA’s planned projects, this will update many areas of the state with the oldest elevation data and cover several areas with recent significant flooding.  WLIP will administer the cooperative agreement and distribute 3DEP funds to counties. Local contributing partners of Adams, Jefferson, Lafayette, Monroe, and Pepin counties individually contract with GPSC contractor team, Ayres Associates/Quantum Spatial, for data collection and processing services.