City of Northville | Tax Plat Map Creation


City of Northville, Wayne County, MI

Northville is a lively city, with a 149-year old history, that offers beautiful neighborhoods, a vibrant business district, first-rate schools and city services, historic buildings and settings, and plenty of parks and trails for relaxing, enjoying nature and staying active.

The city embraces its heritage with historic buildings in downtown Northville, neighborhoods that feature 19th Century homes, and unique historical sites.  Specialty shops, art galleries, theaters, restaurants and intriguing landmarks abound in the walkable downtown.

Click here to explore the City of Northville and learn more!

Project Background

03compThe Tax and Assessing Department is responsible for maintaining records on all properties throughout the city.  Tax Plat Maps are critical for internal daily operations as they display the real parcel property configuration, historical plat boundaries, identification and dimensions.  These maps are also heavily referred to by local realtors and residents for property sales and inquiries.   Maintaining current copies of these maps are also required by the State of Michigan, Department of Treasury State Tax Commission.

The city administration completed a procedural review and came to the conclusion that over time the plat map updating process had become time-consuming and inefficient.  As opposed to requesting another round of updates that would produce static hard copy maps, the administration seized the opportunity to develop a more sustainable solution by incorporating GIS technology.

Ritter GIS was selected to partner with the city for the complete re-development of the parcel and plat feature layers utilizing ESRI Coordinate Geometry (COGO).  With this methodology, our development team processes actual property legal description data to develop a highly-accurate, and contiguous parcel boundary layer.

Locating the sources of record included historical plat documents, master deed exhibits, and additional map/documents for land divisions and combinations.  This endeavor was particularly challenging in some areas as the plat information dated back to the early 1900’s.  Additionally, numerous inconsistencies were realized with the existing GIS parcel layer when compared to the actual layout.

Realized Benefits Include:

  • Accurate boundary lines for all projects displaying parcel information.
  • Efficient and accurate method for processing public notifications.
  • Minimal effort to process annual land divisions (splits & combinations).
  • Foundation for creating easement, right-of-way, and subdivision boundaries.
  • Increased accuracies and development for additional layers including utility locations, land features, zoning, land value, and economic condition factor analysis.
  • Thorough quality control for the GIS parcel layer and assessing database.
  • Ability to display information that may not be on current tax maps:
    •   Condominium unit numbers & street names, ingress/egress easements, facilities, city/township property, acreage dimensions, and accurate water features.
  • Custom design and layout.
  • Fast turnaround time for map production.
  • Digital data can be viewed internally and published.
  • Electronic data back-up and maintenance.
  • Essential for State of Michigan Tax Commission 14-Point Review standards.




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