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USGS Raises Price of Topo Maps

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USGS Raises Price of Topo Maps

Postby ERIC » Mon Mar 23, 2009 8:07 am

USGS Raises Price of Topo Maps

Mar 17, 2009 ... ryId=36775

The price of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) 1:24,000-scale topographic quadrangle map — often called a "topo" or a "quad" — was raised two dollars per sheet to eight dollars on March 16, 2009. Larger format ("poster") maps went up three dollars per sheet to ten dollars. These prices were last increased seven years ago.

"The USGS takes this action reluctantly," said Kevin Gallagher, associate director of the Geospatial Information Office. "However, recent studies indicated that previous map prices did not allow us to sufficiently recover the actual costs of reproduction and distribution as we are charged to do by longstanding Office of Management and Budget guidance under Circular A-130."

USGS began a systematic program of topographic mapping in 1884 as an aid to scientific studies in geology and hydrology. Since then, the maps have become a signature product of USGS, because the public has found them to be a valuable tool for accurately depicting the land surface, according to the agency.

"Even at the new prices, these maps are still a great bargain considering the wealth of geographic information they provide," Gallagher added.

The nation is covered by more than 57,000 detailed USGS topographic maps that show the shape and elevations of terrain and delineate a wide range of natural features and built structures. USGS maps are particularly useful for natural resource managers, planners, engineers, and outdoor enthusiasts. During natural disasters, such as hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes, thousands of USGS map sheets are typically rushed to the area overnight to assist emergency agencies in response and recovery efforts.

The USGS sells its maps and other cartographic products in various formats from its distribution center in Denver, Colorado. Paper maps are principally sold through a nationwide network of business partners in the private sector.
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Re: USGS Raises Price of Topo Maps

Postby fishmonger » Tue Mar 24, 2009 2:03 pm

I stopped buying them when I realized the data is public domain and can be downloaded (at least the California sheets)

Now I print my own custom 24k maps and I can burn them in the camp fire when I am done with the trail segment :unibrow: I cant print them as large as the USGS maps, but for overview I use a different scale anyway, printing just the key sections in 24k

UC Davis has all maps online - not easy to find, but they are all there in easily to use TIFF format.
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