The national mapping agency in Kuwait is the Survey Department, which grew from a surveying unit established in the Public Works department in 1951. Hunting Surveys carried out topographic and geological surveying in Kuwait and helped in the establishment of geodetic control in the 1960 and 1970s, and the map base was intensified in projects carried out by the Japanese Asia Air Survey Company from 1977. Line mapping was compiled at 1:25,000, 1:50,000 and 1:100,000 scales, and an orthophoto map at 1:10,000 covered the whole of Kuwait in 688 sheets. The settled areas of Kuwait were compiled at 1:2,000, with a 1:500 scale map published for the more important built-up areas. All these maps were revised on a regular basis, and captured from aerial coverage. All used the UTM grid. From 1983 the 1:500 map was captured as digital data in the KUDAMS project, and an integrated cadastral, topographic and utilities mapping system using the Kuwait Transverse Mercator grid was completed prior to the Gulf War and held in an Intergraph system.

British military mapping published after the war at 1:50,000 scale in series (K7611) gives complete coverage of Kuwait in 33 sheets. This series uses the UTM projection, WGS 84 ellipsoid and shows relief with 5 m contours.

Soviet military topographic mapping of Kuwait is available at the following scales: 1:1,000,000 (2 sheets, complete coverage, published 1976-1985); 1:500,000 (4 sheets, complete coverage, published 1975-1981); 1:200,000 (10 sheets, complete coverage, published 1978-1990); 1:100,000 (22 sheets, complete coverage, published 1975-1976) and city (1:10,000) topographic mapping of Kuwait City and Mina-Al-Ahmadi (Ahmadi) published between 1976 and 1979. These products are available in print, digital raster and digital vector GIS formats from East View Geospatial.

After the war the Kuwait Municipality started work on the Third Kuwait master plan incorporating national data, a metropolitan area structure plan, and a more detailed local plan of Kuwait Town in a GIS framework, with a parcel-based approach to land management. Data is held by the Survey Department in ARC/INFO. Satellite data form a detailed pictorial backdrop, KUDAM utility and topographic data were converted from Intergraph format and simplified. These may be superimposed upon the image layer, and registered to the Kuwait Transverse Mercator grid. Current land use data has also been created by the municipality from imagery, and zoning information may also be overlaid. All structured data is to be used for the creation of customized map output for a very wide variety of applications, with map production direct from the GIS.

Kuwait is covered in 1:50,000, 1:100,000 and 1:250,000 scale geological mapping prepared in 1981 by Hunting Geology and Geophysics for the Kuwait Oil Company (now Kuwait National Petroleum Company). These maps were derived from LANDSAT imagery. Geological coverage of Kuwait compiled by the Austrian Geologische Bundesanstalt (GBA) and published at 1:250 000 scale, remains the best available earth science mapping of the country.

The Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) has established an environmental GIS for Kuwait. Data from topographic, geomorphological, soil, administrative environmental sensitivity, and bathymetric mapping, are merged and linked to tabular data in an ARC/INFO-based system.

Kuwait is mapped on single-sheet coverage revised after the Gulf War and published in the GEOprojects Arab World map series.

Copyright © 2014 De Gruyter for e-version of World Mapping Today, 2nd Edition | Copyright © 2019 East View Geospatial, Inc.

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