View Full Version : Drawing a gas pipeline and showing affected property boundaries

09-10-2012, 09:34 AM
I am a Microsoft Access developer and have programmed in VBA for many years.

The project I am working on needs to visually display domestic and commercial property boundaries and the path of a proposed pipeline
through those boundaries.

This is pretty new to me, but I am assuming that the client will supply me with the following data:

1. GPS data for each point of each propertry boundary, so that boundary 'shapes' can be constructed on a map. Hmm..or maybe even a
'static' map (i.e. a drawing of the area, showing property boundaries, supplied by the UK Land Registry) that I can overlay the pipeline onto.

2. GPS data for each point (section) of the pipeline, so that the path of the pipeline can be plotted.

With this data could I use Mappoint to build a map that will allow the user to visually see which properties will be affected by the

Can I embed the 'Live' map into Access? In this case, will each user of the Access application need Mappoint installed?

As a Mappoint novice, but experienced VBA programmer, could I figure out how to do all this in a few days? Weeks? Months?



Mattys Consulting
09-10-2012, 10:00 AM
Hi Paul,

Most of your setup can be done in the MapPoint Application, outside Access.
I think you'll need MPSuperShape: Shape Manipulation (http://www.mpsupershape.com) to import either a shp or gpx of the pipeline.
You can then place the MapPoint ActiveX control on an Access form and fairly easily duplicate the all functionality required within days.
Everyone using your app must have MapPoint installed.
We are one of a few freelancers available for consulting, should you need it.

Eric Frost
09-10-2012, 10:25 AM
MapPoint is easy for experienced VBA programmers, especially if you make good use of this forum :-) There are tons of sample code snippets and helpful people to help point you in the right direction.

I think the difficulty level of the whole project will depend A LOT on the data. It's easy to plot custom lines/shapes, etc. on MapPoint programmatically, but if you are importing very detailed ESRI shape files, MapPoint can get bogged down. You might end up needing to "thin" or generalize the data before plotting in MapPoint.

Beyond that though I think you will find MapPoint easy to use and program!


Eric Frost
09-10-2012, 10:34 AM
>> Can I embed the 'Live' map into Access? In this case, will each user of the Access application need Mappoint installed? <<

For a "Live" map they would need MapPoint installed. Alternatively, if there are no more than a few hundred potentially interesting map views, they might be all pre-generated and stored in Access?

Mattys Consulting
09-14-2012, 12:48 AM
I should mention that detailed printed maps are much easier to view than scrolling and zooming.
We create and deliver your MapPoint maps in either PDF or laminated wall-size maps (36"x48" to 72"x96" is the common range)

09-14-2012, 09:20 AM
As Eric says, the shapes could bog things down - especially if there are a lot of detailed ones.

A lot might depend on your property boundaries. For example it might be possible to do geometric processing with them without plotting in MapPoint - and then then for display/illustration purposes, you could plot on the boundaries that are intersected by the pipeline.

Presumably the boundaries come from the Land Registry? Not sure how they are supplying boundaries, but my understanding is that OS Mastermap data includes this kind of information - so they might supply the data as Mastermap. If so, I do have some experience developing with Mastermap for a UK-based GIS company...

09-20-2012, 06:13 AM
Sorry it has taken a while to respond - I've been on holiday.

Thank you all for your helpful comments, this should get me well under way. I just wanted to find out if, in principle, I could do this.

Now to install the MapPoint demo...

One other thing, I will be testing this with Access 2007 and the demo version of 'MapPoint 2011 Europe', anything I need to watch out for?


Eric Frost
09-20-2012, 09:03 AM
They should work fine together... I don't think you will encounter any specific compatibility issues.


10-08-2012, 10:02 AM
Hello again.

Ok, I have finally found time to have a play. I asked the client to send me the data files that he uses as raw data to import into his existing mapping software (MapGuide Project Home | MapGuide Open Source (http://mapguide.osgeo.org/)) so that I could try and import them into Mappoint. Mappoint didn't offer me an option to import these types of files. He sent me six files, all with the same name but each had different extensions: .cpg - .dbf - .idx - .prj - .shp - .shx.

I am not sure what these files are or how to get them into Mappoint.

Any ideas? Do I need a converter? Or should asked for another format?



Mattys Consulting
10-08-2012, 10:30 AM

Please click the MPSuperShape link in my previous post, that will import the shp file (the others are all part of the shp file).

10-08-2012, 11:41 AM
Thanks Michael,

I have installed MPSuperShape. When I tried to import the shp file (all of it's corresponding files where in the same folder) I got the following error:

"Error opening projection file, msg: The type initializer for 'OSGeo.OSR.OsrPINVOKE' threw an exception."

I clicked OK and immediately got another error:

"The file's bounding box is out of range: Does it use the correct projection and coordinate system?
MPSuperShape only supports decimal degrees using the WGS84 geoid."

I clicked OK and again, nothing seemed to have been imported.



Eric Frost
10-08-2012, 11:48 AM
You'll need to re-project the file before importing... I'm not sure what is the best free tool to do this (GRASS or Quantum GIS?). I would normally use MapInfo Pro which costs $2,000. There are other less expensive commercial options.

10-09-2012, 03:48 AM
Thank Eric,

When you say "re-project" does that simply mean I need to open the files in GRASS and I will be given the option of saving them in Mappoint format?


Eric Frost
10-09-2012, 07:38 AM
No, but you'd be able to save them back to a shape file that has been re-projected to "decimal degrees using the WGS84 geoid". Then (hopefully!) MPSuperShape could understand it and import into MapPoint.