Dan Eckberg is our GIS Planner working on map creation, and spatial data acquisition, organization, manipulation, and analysis.

He’s also our drone guy: a licensed commercial Unmanned Aircraft System (drone) pilot registered with the FAA and is able to provide clients with high quality aerial video footage.

Dan utilizes his extensive experience with ESRI’s ArcDesktop GIS software including StoryMaps, and Python scripting, to apply cartographic techniques to a range of planning projects.

These include conducting and writing a formal analysis of potential Fire Station sites for the City of Watertown, mapping Environmental Justice populations and developing novel approaches for ensuring NEPA compliance for WisDOT highway studies, evaluating bike trail routes for the Village of Oregon, analyzing demographics of food deserts in Freeport, IL, geo-coding survey results for city development projects, designing and creating a database of possible Brownfield sites for the City of Janesville, managing Urban Service Area applications, producing numerous Comprehensive Plan maps, and preparing Official Zoning Maps for nearly a dozen Wisconsin communities.

Dan also works extensively with school districts on long range growth reports. This entails meeting with representatives of district municipalities, studying adopted Future Land Use Plans and population trends, and with the aid of GIS, projecting and mapping anticipated quantities and locations of student growth. In a study for the Madison Metropolitan School District, Dan was a key part of the Vandewalle team that developed an award-winning new student projection methodology. This scalable method uses GIS to identify enrollment ratios customized to a given district based upon 26 detailed housing types, differentiated by density and greenfield or infill sites.

Previously, Dan worked as a GIS research assistant at the Minnesota Population Center helping to update the National Historic Geographic Information System (NHGIS). Before that, Dan worked at East View Geospatial and held an internship with U-PLAN, a community planning group for the Frogtown/Rondo neighborhood of St. Paul, MN. In the latter position, Dan helped design a traffic impact analysis for the neighborhood using the CommunityViz extension of ArcGIS.


B.A. Geography (City Systems)
Minor – Geographic Information Systems
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota


Member, American Institute of Certified Planners

Excellence in Planning Award for, “Madison Metropolitan School District Enrollment Projections: 2017-2037″ – APA-WI Chapter, 2017

Guest Lecturer (Applications of GIS in Planning) – University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2012

Excellence of Scholarship Award from the National Council for Geographic Education

Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society


“Icon Under Fire: The Giant Canada Geese of Rochester, Minnesota”