The Base Canvas includes attributes that describe land use, demographics, and development for each parcel or census block feature. UrbanFootprint's Base Canvas creation process incorporates a number of data sources to populate the attribute columns, including population and housing data from the decennial census and American Community Survey; employment data from the Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics (LEHD) program; point of interest data from various sources; and parcel data provided by CoreLogic. (UrbanFootprint can also incorporate local parcel data to create custom parcel-scale canvases.) Detailed information about the process to generate the Base Canvas at the parcel and block resolutions can be found in the Base Parcel Canvas Creation Methodology and Block Canvas Creation Methodology.
For a video overview that explains all the basics of the Base Canvas, you can also watch our webinar: What is the Base Canvas?
The Base Canvas attributes are summarized below.
A unique identifier for the geographic feature.
Land Use Summary (L1)
The highest-level land use category, which includes broad classifications such as Residential, Commercial, and Mixed Use. All lower-level categories nest within higher-level categories.
Land Use Summary (L2)
Second-level land use category, which includes summary classifications such as Single-family and Multifamily.
Land Use Category (L3)
Most detailed land use category, which corresponds to specific land uses such as Single-family detached.
Land Use Type (L4) (or Built Form Type)
Building Type or Place Type of the canvas geometry.
Land Development Category
A broad categorization of land use patterns based on intersection density, housing density, and employment density. The categories include Urban, Compact, Standard (suburban), and Rural.
Density of roadway intersections per square mile, measured over a buffered area of the canvas geometry.
Gross area of the canvas geometry, in acres.
Residential population associated with occupied dwelling units. This excludes people residing in group quarters.
Households, equivalent to occupied dwelling units.
Dwelling units, including occupied and unoccupied units.
All Detached Single-Family Dwelling Units
Total detached single family homes.
Large Lot Detached Single-Family Dwelling Units
Detached single family homes on lots larger than 5,500 square feet.
Small Lot Detached Single-Family Dwelling Units
Detached single family homes on lots smaller than 5,500 square feet.
Attached Single-Family Dwelling Units (Townhomes)
Attached single family homes, including townhomes, rowhouses, and other units that share walls but are not stacked vertically.
All Multifamily Dwelling Units
Homes in buildings that contain at least two housing units that are adjacent vertically, or horizontally with shared utility systems.
Multi-Family - 2 to 4 Dwelling Units
Homes in buildings that contain two to four housing units that are adjacent vertically, or horizontally with shared utility systems. Note that, while this column appropriately represents units in buildings of this size category in the Base Canvas, all new multifamily units are assigned to this category by default in scenarios. Scenario analysis does not differentiate between the multifamily building size categories.
Multi-Family - 5 or More Dwelling Units
Homes in buildings that contain more than five housing units that are adjacent vertically, or horizontally with shared utility systems. Note that ,while this column appropriately represents units in buildings of this size category in the Base Canvas, all new multifamily units are assigned to the du_mf2to4 category by default in scenarios. Scenario analysis does not differentiate between the multifamily building size categories.