Bringing GIS to the World of Jazz Music

Brian Kingery, GISP By: Brian Kingery, GISP



This year, the Richmond Jazz and Music Festival celebrated its 10th anniversary. For the past decade, the festival has hosted and celebrated local, national, and even international musical acts across three separate stages at Maymont Park. In addition to the musical acts, the festival also included over 100 vendor and production elements.

This past year, Timmons Group was involved in the creation of a detailed, printable, and digitally accessible site map of the park that included spatially accurate locations for every production element to streamline the load-in, staging, and setup of the festival for the hundreds of staff and volunteers involved.

Since the festival follows a similar layout year after year, our team was able to use aerial photos from the 2018 festival to better incorporate the points on the map and as a valuable reference to planners.

Drone image from 2018 festival was geolocated and available for reference

To create the map, Timmons Group leveraged ArcGIS Online’s suite of applications such as Collector for ArcGIS and Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS to create a live editing environment as well as a Production Setup application. The editing environment allowed our field team to integrate highly accurate GPS information along with live edits by festival planners.

Drone image from 2018 festival

Beginning with locational data captured in the field using a Trimble R1 GNSS device to create corner ties for the primary stages and key production elements with accuracy within ~1 foot, Timmons Group was able to create a working draft of the site plan using ArcGIS Pro.

As the festival date got closer and the production team refined the site plan, our web-based solution allowed them to make edits quickly using a configurable editing application to make geometry and attribute changes to festival elements. This flexibility proved key when one of the primary site planners – while, coincidentally, on location at another festival site in Europe – was able to make key adjustments to the plan from across the Atlantic Ocean, thousands of miles away. Because the features were shared as web services, all edits were instantly available to everyone involved in the mapping and planning process across all devices.


The printable and digital maps Timmons Group created played a key role in the festival production, and we look forward to partnering with festival planners again in the future to provide an even broader range of GIS services such as live digital maps for use by artists, attendees and first responders.