Single Field Search: The Missing Manual

In February we released a major enhancement to NYCityMap, the single field search.

With this new input field NYCityMap now supports more search types and formats than ever before. Some of them might not be obvious so we thought we’d provide you with this (no longer) missing manual.

The following types of locations are accepted by the single field search:

  • Borough/Block/Lot (BBL)
  • ZIP Code
  • Community District
  • City Council District
  • Borough
  • City
  • Neighborhood
  • Street between intersections
  • Intersection
  • Coordinate
  • Building
  • Place of Interest
  • Address
Before we begin to discuss each of these in detail, you should know that all search input is considered case-insensitive.  So whether you enter ‘CITY HALL’ or ‘city hall’ you will get the same result.

Borough/Block/Lot (BBL)

Each property in New York City is identified by a set of 3 numbers called the Borough, Block, and Lot (BBL). BBLs are used by many city agencies to identify real estate for taxes, zoning, construction, and other purposes.

The Borough number is always first:
1 = Manhattan
2 = Bronx
3 = Brooklyn
4 = Queens
5 = Staten Island

The Block number is second and can be up to 5 digits.

The Lot number is last and can be up to 4 digits.

An example, the BBL of City Hall is 1001220001.

When it comes to searching for a BBL in the new single field search, several formats are accepted:

  • 1001220001
  • MANHATTAN 122 1
  • MANHATTAN/122/1
  • MANHATTAN-122-1
  • 1 122 1
  • 1/122/1
  • 1-122-1
  • manhattan block:122 lot:1
If the BBL is not found, no alternates will be suggested.  For a BBL search you must get the numbers exactly correct.  If you are not sure what BBL you are looking for you can find the BBL of a property in the Building & Property Information panel on NYCityMap or by identifying the map at the desired location.

ZIP Code

There are two formats of ZIP Code that are accepted, the typical 5-digit ZIP or the extended ZIP+4 format.  Here are some examples:

  • 10007
  • 10007-1602
If the ZIP code is not found, no alternates will be suggested.  For a ZIP code search you must get the numbers exactly correct.  If you are not sure what ZIP code you are looking for, you can search for another location type, like address, and then turn on the ZIP Code layer from the “Show Additional Data on Map” menu.

Community District

There are 59 community districts in NYC.  You can search for them using several formats:

  • 101
  • Community District 101
  • 84 Queens
  • Community District: 3 Staten Island
  • 3 Staten Island
  • Staten Island 3
  • Bronx Community Board 12
  • Board 101
  • Board 1 Manhattan
  • Board Manhattan 1
If the district is not found, no alternates will be suggested.  For a Community District search you must get the input exactly correct.  If you are not sure what Community District you are looking for, you can search for another location type, like address, and then turn on the Community District layer from the “Show Additional Data on Map” menu.
Read more about Community Districts on the Department of City Planning website.

City Council District

The New York City Council is the law-making body of the City of New York.  It is comprised of 51 members from 51 different Council Districts throughout the five boroughs.  You can search for them using several formats:

  • 10
  • city council district 10
  • city council district: 10
If the district is not found, no alternates will be suggested.  For a City Council District search you must get the input exactly correct.  If you are not sure what City Council District you are looking for, you can search for another location type, like address, and then turn on the City Council District layer from the “Show Additional Data on Map” menu.

Borough

In order to see the boundary of a particular borough in NYCityMap, you can search by borough name.  Several abbreviated formats are accepted.  Here are the acceptable values by borough:

Manhattan

  • manhattan
  • MN
Bronx
  • bronx
  • the bronx
  • BX
Brooklyn
  • brooklyn
  • BK
  • BKLYN
Queens
  • queens
  • QN
Staten Island
  • Staten Island
  • SI
These borough formats can be used in several of the other search types, like address and intersection.

City

For 4 of the 5 boroughs, the borough is equivalent to the city (Manhattan = New York).  However Queens is made up of 44 different cities.  City is a searchable type in NYCityMap.  Here are some examples:

  • Flushing
  • Rego Park
  • Woodside
  • Astoria
  • East Elmhurst
If the city is not found, no alternates will be suggested.  For a city name search you must get the input exactly correct.  If you are not sure what city you are looking for, you might try searching by ZIP code instead.

Neighborhood

New York City’s neighborhoods are constantly changing and for that reason hard to pin down geographically.  But we know that we have many NYC visitors who use NYCityMap and may want to get a general idea of the vicinity of a neighborhood.  For that reason we have added a neighborhood search type.  Searching for a neighborhood name will take you to roughly the center of the requested neighborhood.  There are 296 neighborhoods available in NYCityMap, here are a few:

  • Battery Park
  • Brooklyn Heights
  • East Harlem
  • East Village
  • Highbridge
  • Riverdale

Street between intersections

If you want to search for a block you can do a street between intersections search, also known as a blockface.  This is a segment of a street bordered by two intersections.  Take the example shown in the image below, Broadway between Park Place and Barclay Street in Manhattan:

This blockface can be entered into the single field search in several formats:

  • Broadway between Park Place and Barclay Street, MN
  • Broadway between Park Place & Barclay Street, MN
  • Broadway bw Park Place and Barclay Street, Manhattan
  • Broadway b/w Park Place and Barclay Street, 10007
  • Broadway btwn Park Place and Barclay Street Manhattan
  • Broadway btwn. Park Place and Barclay Street MN
To extrapolate the format, you would get:
<On Street> <between> <Cross Street> <and> <Cross Street> <Borough>
The <between> can be specified as any of the following:
  • between
  • bw
  • b/w
  • btwn
  • btwn.
The <and> can be specified as any of the following:
  • and
  • &
  • &&
The <borough> can be specified in any of the formats listed under the Borough search description.  The borough can also be left out if you are unsure, the system will attempt to locate the blockface within each of the 5 boroughs.
If any of the street names were not understood, alternate suggestions for similar names will be made.  For example, if you entered “Brodway between Park Place and Barclay Street, MN” then “Broadway between Park Place and Barclay Street, MN” would be suggested.

Intersection

An intersection is the meeting of any two streets.  Like a blockface search several formats are accepted and they can be extrapolated as:

<Cross Street> <and> <Cross Street> <Borough>

The <and> can be specified as any of the following:
  • and
  • @
  • at
  • &
  • &&
The <borough> can be specified in any of the formats listed under the Borough search description.  The borough can also be left out if you are unsure, the system will attempt to locate the blockface within each of the 5 boroughs.
So if we were to search for Broadway and Park Place in Manhattan, any of the following formats would be acceptable:
  • Broadway and Park Place, Manhattan
  • Broadway @ Park Place, 10007
  • Broadway at Park Place, MN
  • Broadway & Park Place, New York
If any of the street names were not understood, alternate suggestions for similar names will be made.  For example, if you entered “Brodway and Park Place, MN” then “Broadway and Park Place, MN” would be suggested.

Coordinate

You can search for coordinates in latitude and longitude or NY State Plane.  As with other searches, several formats are accepted:

  • <x> <y>
  • <x> / <y>
  • <x>, <y>
  • x:<x> y:<y>
  • x=<x> y=<y>
  • <longitude> <latitude>
  • <longitude> / <latitude>
  • <longitude>, <latitude>
  • lon: <longitude> lat: <latitude>
  • lon=<longitude> lat=<latitude>
  • long: <longitude> lat: <latitude>
  • long=<longitude> lat=<latitude>
Here are some example coordinates:
  • 982574, 198961 (City Hall, Manhattan)
  • -73.9858 / 40.7485 (Empire State Building, Manhattan)
If your coordinates fall outside of New York City the search will result in an error.

Building

Buildings in NYC have a unique Building Identification Number (BIN).  This 7-digit number number is  assigned by the Department of City Planning.  Most users will not be familiar with the BIN number they are looking for, if you would like to find a BIN number you can use the Department of Buildings Buildings Information Search application, but most users will search by address instead.

For example, the BIN number for 52 Chambers Street in Manhattan is 1079146.

Place of Interest

Major sites within New York City can be searched as a place of interest without having to know the specific address.  Even including a borough on this search is optional.  Here are some examples:

  • Statue of Liberty
  • Empire State Building
  • Empire State Building, MN
  • Yankee Stadium
  • Citi Field

Address

Last, but certainly not least, we have the address search.  For the address search there are too numerous formats accepted to list them all.  There are however only 3 components that your address search must include: house number, street, and borough.  Borough can be indicated by borough name, borough abbreviation, ZIP code, or city.  You may in some cases provide more information than this in your search input, and that is okay, but the extra info will be ignored.  Here are some examples, all of them result in the same address search for 52 Chambers Street in Manhattan.

  • 52 Chambers Street MN
  • 52 Chambers Street 10007
  • 52 Chambers Street Manhattan
  • 52 Chambers Street, New York
  • 52 Chambers Street, New York, NY 10007
  • 52 Chambers St, MN
As with places of interest and other searches, you do not have to include the borough, but it will make your searches more accurate.  If no borough is included we will attempt to find that house number and street in each of the 5 boroughs, any successful hits will be returned for you to choose from.
If  the street name is not recognized, alternate suggestions for similar names will be made.  For example, if you entered “52 Chabers Street, MN” then “52 Chambers Street, MN” would be suggested.
Feedback

What are we missing?  Submit feedback and let us know.

2011: A Year in Maps

Visitors in 2011: 2,342,266

Hits in 2011: 26,548,886

Top 5 Webmap Application:

  1. NYCityMap (54.2%)
  2. OEM Hurricane Evacuation Zone Finder (24.6%)
  3. Parks Maps (7.0%)
  4. Nycha Housing Developments (4.6%)
  5. 311 Service Request Map (2.1%)

Top 5 Operations:

  1. Search for a location
  2. Identify
  3. Zoom by Mouse Wheel
  4. Zoom to Level
  5. Get Info

Top 5 Layers:

  1. Subway
  2. Landmark Districts
  3. Landmarks
  4. School
  5. Parks

Top 5 Search Types:

  1. Address
  2. Feature (Community district, zip code, city council)
  3. Intersection
  4. Borough Block and Lot (BBL)
  5. Place of Interest

Top 10 Areas:

  1. New York, NY
  2. Marina Del Rey, California
  3. Chantilly, VA
  4. Hicksville, NY
  5. Toronto, Canada
  6. Brooklyn, NY
  7. Washington, D.C.
  8. Chicago, IL
  9. Reston, VA
  10. Staten Island, NY
  11. Bronx, NY

New webmap applications:

Rat Information Portal

The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Rat Information Portal was recently converted to Webmap. The Rat Information Portal (RIP) is a web-based mapping application where users can view rat inspection data. Findings from the Health Department’s inspections are searchable by address, or by borough, block and lot (BBL). You can use the map tools to find information about properties on the map.

Visit the Rat Information Portal at gis.nyc.gov/doh/rip to view rat inspection data.

For help navigating the map, check out the RIP Quick Start Guide

Election and Municipal Court Districts

Today we added two new requested layers to Citymap: Election and Municipal Court Districts. You can find them both under the Municipal Boundaries group with Show Additional Data on Map.


New York City Board of Elections election districts for the City of New York. These district boundaries represent the redistricting as of the US Census 2000.


The New York City Municipal Court boundaries.

NYCityMap 12.0 Release Notes

2010 Aerial Photos

We’ve added the 2010 aerial photographs to NYCityMap. Now you can view aerial photography from 1924, 1951, 1996, 2006, 2008, and 2010.

In these screenshots you can see the difference from 2008 to 2010 in the area of the Brooklyn Bridge Park.


Brooklyn Bridge Park 2008


Brooklyn Bridge Park 2010

FRESH Program

The Food Retail Expansion to Support Health (FRESH) data has been updated to reflect new program areas and incentive types.

FRESH provides zoning and financial incentives to promote the establishment and retention of neighborhood grocery stores in underserved communities throughout the five boroughs. You can read more about the program here.


Data Feedback

We’ve been collecting data feedback from our users since February and incorporating it into our own data whenever possible. Sometimes we have questions about what you are trying to tell us. To help with this we’ve added new name and email address fields to the data feedback form. They’re both optional, so you can choose to remain anonymous if you want to. We will contact you only if we have questions specifically related to the feedback you have provided. Contact information will not be used for any other purpose.

Municipal Boundaries

We’ve cleaned up the look of our municipal boundary outlines.


Previous boundary outline


New boundary outline

User Guide migrated to Blog

So that we can better maintain the content, we’ve moved the User Guide to this blog site instead of storing it as a PDF.

Check it out here.

Browser Specific Defects

Since our last release you may have encountered a couple of browser specific defects. First, in Firefox it was not possible to stop the measure tool. Normally measuring is stopped by double-clicking. Second, in Chrome, links from identify callout boxes were unclickable. Both of these issues have been fixed in this release.

Performance Enhancements

In order to improve performance on all of our websites we’ve contracted with a Content Delivery Network. This will help you receive all sorts of static content much faster while freeing our servers to perform the real spatial work needed to make your map.

NYCityMap 11.0 Release Notes

This quarter we’ve released two new features that we think you will appreciate.

Zoom to Layer

A right-click context menu was added to all non-visible layers.  Selecting the “Zoom to …” menu item will zoom the map to the nearest scale at which the layer is visible and turn on that layer


“Zoom to Fire House” Menu Item


After “Zoom to Fire House”

Add identify result to list of searched locations

When viewing the basemap at the building level, the identify tool () was available to view information about a particular tax parcel. With this release, we have added the ability to add the tax parcel to your searched locations so you can discover even more information. From the identify result, simply click the “Add to Searched Locations” link and the tax parcel number will be added to the list of searched locations.


Identify result with link to add to searched locations


Searched location with additional information

NYCityMap 10.0 Release Notes

Performance Enhancements

We’re excited to announce release 10.0 which contains a lot of performance enhancements. With this release we attempted to reduce the initial map load time as much as possible. To accomplish this we:

  • converted our tool icons to sprites
  • added cache-control headers for browser and proxy level caching of files which change infrequently
  • created new domain names for serving map tiles from multiple domains for faster simultaneous download
  • added more caching of thematic data on the server-side, this benefits applications like SCOUT, 311 SRMap, and Performance Mapping Report
  • reduced search time for retrieving elected officials

Health Facilities

We’ve added the locations of a few health facilities to NYCityMap.  You can find them all in the Health Facilities group.

New Basemap Tiles

We’ve released a new set of basemap tiles.  Some improvements to the tiles include:

  • update to most recent version of LION (find out more information about LION from DCP’s Bytes of the Big Apple)
  • update to most recent building footprint data
  • display of additional park features
  • display of additional street labels at certain scales

Park Tile Before

Park Tile Now

Street Tile Before

Street Tile After

MapPLUTO 10v2

Also in this release we have upgraded from MapPLUTO 10v1 to 10v2. MapPLUTO is available from the NYC Department of City Planning, you can find out more information from their Bytes of the Big Apple website. NYCityMap uses MapPLUTO to provide much of the building information that you see when you search for an address or identify a building on the basemap.

DEP Green Infrastructure Map

In September of 2010 NYC DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) released the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan. According to the Executive Summary, “This Green Infrastructure Plan presents an alternative approach to improving water quality that integrates green infrastructure, such as swales and green roofs, with investments to optimize the existing system and to build targeted, smaller-scale ‘grey’ or traditional infrastructure.”

A major component of the web strategy is to implement a mapping application to show Green Infrastructure projects. This application can be accessed through the ‘Other Themes’ menu on NYCityMap or by clicking here.