Department of the Interior - Bureau of Land Management (BLM)


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Township Geocoder

The BLM GeoCommunicator Township Geocoder provides the ability to pass the coordinates of a Latitude and Longitude (Lat/Long) and have the Township, Range and Section values returned. Likewise, a textual land description formatted as state, meridian, township, range, section, aliquot can be passed and the value for the polygon centroid will be returned in Lat/Long format. There is also an option for bulk upload of a file containing a list of formatted Townships or Lat/Long values and have their respective Lat/long or Township values returned. GeoCoder is provided as a tool on GeoCommunicator or as a Web Service. This free tool/service is useful for finding the land descriptions for well locations, pipelines, fires, etc. based on their lat/long location or for finding the coordinates of a land description for inputting into a gps or other device. GeoCoder can be used for well locations, utility lines, real estate or any other activity where a land description or latitude and longitude conversion is needed. The web service can be used by developers to create their own tool or used to process conversions.

GeoCoder uses the Public Land Survey System (PLSS) data in GeoCommunicator in NAD83. The conversion can only be used on lands where we have PLSS data as shown in gold (BLM data) and blue (other source data) as indicated on the PLSS Source Map ==>>

Data conversion on lands in blue is mainly only to the section level. To view the detailed land descriptions the GeoCommunicator PLSS map, zoom into an area to see the detailed land description information. You can also use the lat/long tool for checking the location data returned from the service.

Public land survey source map

PLSS Source Map


GeoCoder Tool on GeoCommunicator:

Notice: The GeoCoder Tool interface is currently unavailable - use the GeoCoder Web Service for single processing or send request to BLM for batch processing.

GeoCoder provides three input/output methods:

  • Individual Township Range to Lat/long
  • Individual Lat/long to Township Range
  • Bulk File Conversion in either format. File must be formatted and saved as .txt, .csv, or .xls file - see formatting Guide; If you have a very large file you may send us a request that we run the file for you.

References: Example of mapping/formatting PLSS aliquot parts

Geocoder tool

Township Geocoder Tool


GeoCoder Web Service:

Web Service URL
Formatting Guide: Township GeoCoder Web Service Method Parameters and Results
The bulk file option is not working but formatted .txt files can be submitted to BLM for processing > send bulk file request

Get Lat/long example inputs and examples:
http://web.geocommunicator.gov/TownshipGeocoder/TownshipGeocoder.asmx?op=GetLatLon
Format: (State, Principal Meridian, Township #, Township Fraction (zero is none, 2 for half, 3 for 3/4, , Township Direction, Range #, Range Fraction, Range Direction, Section, Aliquot Part, Township duplicate code (usually zero))
UT,26,17,0,S,14,0,E,16,SENE,0
NV,21,40,0,N,57,0,E,21,SWNW,0
CO,06,10,0,S,74,0,W,31,SENW,0

web service

Web Service