Getting Started with Durham Maps

In early 2019 a new mapping product called Durham Maps was released by the City of Durham. Durham Maps brings together data previously contained in the City-County Zoning Atlas and Development Tracker/iMaps, which have both been discontinued. Plot plans can be produced using Durham Maps as described below.

Durham Maps is faster, easier to search, compatible with a wider range of browsers and devices, and offers more commonly-requested information. Developed by the City's Technology Solutions department, this new service includes comprehensive property and zoning information along with current development activity. New features include property photos and on-the-fly reports, a greater array of base map and data layers, and over 10 years of case history including prior development approvals, building, and trade permits.

Click here to launch Durham Maps:

Viewing and customizing the map

  1. When the map opens it will include a base map and previously-defined set of data layers.
  2. To change the base map (to an aerial photo, for example) click the “Change Basemap” icon in the bottom-right corner.
  3. To add or remove data layers, click the menu button in the upper-right corner, then click the "Layer list" button. Choose the desired layers, in the right-hand panel, then click the word “Close” on the left side of the layer panel.
  4. A map legend will appear in the bottom-left portion of the screen. Note: If the left-hand menu or property panel is open the legend will not be visible. Close the menu or panel in order to view the legend.
  5. Certain map labels will not be visible if the map is zoomed out. For example, if the zoning layer is activated, use the scroll wheel on the mouse or click the “Zoom In” button near the bottom-right to zoom in the map. Zoning district labels will begin to appear.

How to browse development activity using the map

  1. To browse active or recently-completed development cases or building permits, choose the “Development Cases” menu item.
  2. Choose Development Cases or Building Permits within the panel that appear on the right side of the screen.
  3. Select the case type and time period from the panel, then click “Add to Map.”
  4. The map legend will indicate how case types are represented on the map.
  5. Specific cases can also be searched individually within the Development Cases panel.
  6. After clicking a Development Case symbol on the map, more information about the project will appear within the left-hand side of the screen.

Selecting a property

  1. A property needs to be selected in order to browse property information and determine the presence of a map feature. There are two ways to select a property.
  2. Selection method #1: A property can be selected by zooming to it on the map. Using the zoom tool, continue to zoom in until the parcel layer begins to appear. Once a parcel has been clicked it will turn blue, indicating that it has been selected. An information panel will appear on the left side of the screen. A photo of the property will appear, along with several tabs that contain various data sets. Some properties contain multiple panels of information, as indicated by the arrow buttons on the top of the left-hand panel. Clicking the “Zoom To” button at the top of the property panel will zoom the map and center it on the selected parcel.
  3. Selection method #2: A property can be selected by entering the property address or six-digit property identification number (PID) in the search bar in the upper-right corner of the screen.
  4. When entering an address, enter the house number and street name, then pause. Do not include a street suffix like ST, RD, or AVE. After a moment a list of matches will appear under the search bar. Click on the desired address with the mouse pointer. The map will select the address point for that property. Alternatively, a user can enter the Durham County six-digit Parcel Identification Number (PID) in the search bar if a street address is not providing a record match.
  5. The map will zoom to the address chosen and a property information box will appear on the left-hand side

Browsing property and regulatory information

  1. Once a property is selected (see previous section) the user will see three primary tabs within the property information panel.
  2. The Property Record tab will appear by default under the property photo. This tab contains ownership information, parcel size, parcel ID number, PIN number, and address. It also includes a link to the property record card (Durham County Tax Administration web site), which includes a more detailed property summary.
  3. The Advanced tab displays information related to the active data layers, for example zoning district, watershed protection overlay, and flood zones. If a layer is not present, it will be listed in the Layers That Did Not Overlap section. For example, if Local Historic District appears in the list, it means that the property is not located in a Local Historic District.
  4. The Related Records tab includes development cases, building permits, and trade permits associated with the property. These records are available from 2007. If a record is listed, it will include a link containing additional summary information.

Printing from the map

  1. To export the map to a printable format, click the “Export/Save to PDF” button on the bottom-right.
  2. A panel will appear, which can be used to customize printing properties.
  3. Print the blue "Export" button, and the map will begin to generate a PDF file.
  4. After a few moments the PDF file will be ready. Click the green cloud icon in the print panel to open the PDF file in the web browser.
  5. This file can be saved to a local machine and printed.

Printing a plot plan

  1. Change the base map to "Imagery Hybrid" (see Viewing and customizing the map).
  2. Select the parcel and click the "Zoom To" button (see Locating property information).
  3. Click the menu button, then click Layer List. In the Administrative section of the layer list, turn on the Parcel Labels layer. This will show the lot dimensions on the map.
  4. Export the map (see Printing a map). Alternatively you can take a screen shot of the map if the export function is not working as desired. If taking a screenshot, ensure the graphical scale is visible in the lower-right corner.
  5. See City-County Inspections requirements for plot plans.

Searching for land records or permits

Option 1: Development Cases panel. 1. With this option the user can select development cases shown on the map, or search for a specific case number (see How to browse development activity using the map). Option 2: Property-specific records look-up. 1. With this option a property is first selected, and then the user can view a list of land records or building permits associated with that property. 2. These records are shown in the Related Records tab (see Browsing property and regulatory information).

See other articles in DSC helpdesk tips