Iowa Cooperative Soil Survey


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This site provides free access to Iowa soils data for use in geographic information system applications. The site is maintained by the Iowa State University Geographic Information Systems Support and Research Facility in cooperation with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the Iowa Cooperative Soil Survey.

The Iowa Cooperative Soil Survey (ICSS) is a partnership that began in 1966 between the Iowa Cooperative Extension Service and the Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station at Iowa State University, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Division of Soil Conservation, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. The general purpose of the ICSS is to coordinate the collection, compilation, interpretation, publication, dissemination, and use of soil surveys in Iowa.



November 24, 2003

New website launched today! This site is being updated. Please check back for new information.




Download USDA-NRCS Soil Survey Geographic Data (SSURGO) This link connects to the Soil Data Mart containing Iowa county Soil Survey Geographic (SSURGO) data provided by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. SSURGO is the most detailed level of soil mapping produced by the USDA-NRCS. The mapping scale for Iowa is 1:12,000. SSURGO digitizing duplicates the original soil survey maps utilizing digital orthophoto basemaps. This level of mapping is designed for use by landowners and natural resource planning and management. You can also access SSURGO maps online through the USDA-NRCS Web Soil Survey.

Download ICSS Digital Soil Map Data This link connects to directories containing Iowa soils data in township and county-wide format (Note these files are not SSURGO compliant). The files are WinZip archives in the ESRI Shapefile format; use WinZip or Unzip to extract. Coordinate System Description: Projection UTM Zone 15, Datum NAD83 (for county-wide) NAD27 (for township), Spheroid GRS80 (CLARKE66), Units METERS.

Iowa Soil Properties and Interpretations Database ISPAID Manual version 7.0 (Acrobat PDF).

ISPAID version 7.0 CD Order form.