Sunday, August 4, 2013

Hawaii County GIS Resources - Parcel (TMK) Data

I'm spending this week on Big Island working with county staff who use GIS in their work.  I've compiled some links to online resources that we'll be using during the week and since they may have broader interest, I'm sharing them here.

In a post on general resources, I provided information and links on:
  - Upcoming Events
  - ArcGIS for Desktop: Data Driven Pages
  - ArcGIS for Desktop: Editing
  - ArcGIS for Desktop: Miscellaneous
  - ArcGIS Online
  - LGIM: Local Government Information Models

In an another post I provide information and links on address data.

In this post I'll cover one of the fundamental GIS layers in local government - the parcel layer.


The County of Hawaii Real Property Tax Division maintains maps and data describing land parcels in the County. This is often called the TMK (Tax Map Key) data after the unique tax map key number assigned to every property. Each TMK has nine digits (ie: 322012004) assigned as 'dzspppnnn' where:

   d = the Division: Hawaii County is always 3
   z = the Zone: Hawaii County has nine zones (see map to the left)
   s = the Section: each zone is divided into nine sections
   ppp = the Plat: each section is divided into plats
   nnn = the Parcel number within a plat

Division, Zone, Section, Plat (three digits) and Parcel (three digits) are combined to create a unique TMK number for every parcel in the County. In my example, 322012004, the division is 3, the zone is 2, the section is 2, the plat is 12 and the parcel is 4. Note the use of leading zeros for the plat and parcel numbers.

Some parcels have taxable units within the parcel. Sometimes these are condos, sometimes agricultural lots, sometimes for other reasons. These CPR or HPR numbers, if they exist, add four more digits on to the right side of the TMK, creating a thirteen digit full TMK. There are none for the example parcel, so its full TMK is 3220120040000.

Real Property Links

Here are some useful links to find Hawaii County Real Property maps and information:

Searchable data: Ownership, sales, permit and other information can be searched for by TMK or by Address at:

Plat maps: Parcel maps are organized by plats, there is a separate map sheet (plat map) for every plat in the County. Each plat map sheet has been scanned and is available online. Here's the link:

Subdivision maps: Plat map sheets compile information from one or more subdivision maps. The individual subdivision maps are also available online. Here's the link:

A few notes:

- The Division is the same for the entire County (3) and it is left off of the TMK in some databases, leaving an eight digit TMK. While this works within a single county, it does not work for statewide TMK databases.

- In some databases, the TMK is written with dashes and a colon to make it easier for people to read, and often the Division is dropped, so you'll see 'z-s-ppp:nnn' for the TMK.  This can wreak havoc when relating different tables by TMK, be careful!

For more examples of how TMK data can be used in GIS, you can read my Hawaii GeoTeam 2013 blog on TMK data in GIS.


There are maps and apps that work with the LGIM for Land Records.  

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