The Surveys and Mapping Department (USMD) carries out official mapping of the country. Uganda’s mapping infrastructure was established under British aid programs between 1950 and the mid-1970s. A 1:50,000 scale series was started in 1950, early editions were planimetric only. Most sheets produced by the Directorate of Overseas Surveys (DOS) (now Ordnance Survey International (OSI)) showed relief with 50 ft contours, and after 1968 with 20 m intervals. This map was completed in 1969 in 316 sheets and the current specification uses the Transverse Mercator projection, modified Clarke 1880 ellipsoid, and conforms to the usual East African pattern. In 1994, and in conjunction with Japanese technical aid, a revision program started to generate new versions from SPOT satellite images. A block of about 50 maps covering the area immediately north of Lake Victoria was published by the end of 1997. Further revision of the series is to be carried out the French financed CAMPUS project, which started in 1996. This will revise other sheets in the series using digital image processed data from SPOT satellite images. It is also planned to establish a digital cadastral database of the country and provide land management administration with accurate and current large scale graphic and textual data.
A 1:250,000 scale series derived from the 1:50,000 map covered Uganda in 20 sheets. Other smaller scale maps include a recent 1:500,000 scale wall map of the country and 1:1,000,000 scale IMW coverage updated in 1997 with national park information. Administrative mapping of Uganda is also compiled and tourist mapping of national parks produced.
Soviet military topographic mapping of Uganda exists at the following scales: 1:1,000,000 (5 sheets, complete coverage, published 1958-1984); 1:500,000 (9 sheets, complete coverage, published 1962-1980); 1:200,000 (7 sheets, northern coverage, published 1979-1982); 1:100,000 (2 sheets, northern coverage, published in 1981) and a city (1:10,000) topographic map of Kampala published in 1981. These products are available in print, digital raster and digital vector GIS formats from East View Geospatial.
The Uganda Geological Survey Department (now Department of Geological Survey and Mines (UDGSM)) carried out geological and other earth science mapping in the 1960s and 1970s. Series were published at 1:100,000 and 1:250,000 scales, using topographic sheet lines. The 1:250,000 scale series is available for most of the country as a Bouguer gravity edition, and for some areas as a geological map. 1:100,000 scale maps use half-degree sheet lines and give more patchy coverage. Other smaller scale maps show geology, geochemical and gravity data for the whole country.
USMD has also coordinated thematic mapping carried out by other official agencies. 1:250,000 scale soil and vegetation maps were compiled in the 1960s and 1970s by the Department of Agriculture, and published as four-color data overprinted on topographic bases.
A more recent initiative funded through the United Nations Development Program and using Norwegian technical aid has led to the establishment of a pilot digital national land use and land cover inventory. This ARC/INFO-based system has been set up in the Uganda Forest Department, Kampala. Data has been captured from 1:50,000 scale topographic coverage and the results have been generalized and published in hard copy and as digital data, with 1:500,000 scale coverage produced in 1996 for the National Biomass Study. The third phase of this project is establishing a framework for monitoring land cover and biomass across the country.
Large-scale coverage of Kampala and about 40 towns is also published including photogrammetric 1:2,500 scale mapping, used to derive 1:10,000 or 1:12,500 scale maps. A program of digital mapping funded through the World Bank and executed with German technical aid is updating these surveys for Kampala, which is covered in 324 1:2,500 scale photogrammetric digital topographic maps, some of which are linked to digital cadastral data. In 1995 the first three digital 1:10,000 scale maps from a projected coverage of 21 sheets for the city center were issued. The area of the extended city will be covered by a 1:25,000 scale digital map.
Small-scale tourist mapping of Uganda has recently been published by Shell Uganda, International Travel Maps (ITM) and Macmillan, who also issue administrative mapping and a town map of Kampala. Mapping of the Ruwenzori mountains is published by West Col. The country is also covered on maps described in our Africa, East section.