CadNSDI Montana

Map of public land survey data near Polson, MontanaData and Documentation

Montana PLSS CadNSDI Data Download

The CadNSDI represents the cadastral components of the Public Land Survey System (PLSS). Generally published annually, the data are provided as geodatabase and shapefile formats in the NAD 83 (2011) projection. Previous publications of the CadNSDI are available as Related Records

Public Land Survey System Web Map Service

The Montana Public Land Survey System comprises townships, sections, section subdivisions, and special surveys.

CadNSDI PLSS Handbook

A handbook for GIS users of the CadNSDI Publication data set published by the FGDC Cadastral Subcommittee PLSS Work Group

National Parcels Blog

A discussion site for national parcel and cadastral data to support the Cadastral NSDI.

Federal Land Records

Landing page for federal land records resources.


CadNSDI Montana is the current, authoritative source for the most accurate GIS representation of the PLSS. The name “CadNSDI” comes from the FGDC’s Cadastral Subcommittee. In the spring of 2014, the Montana State Library (MSL) assumed the management and publication of the Montana CadNSDI. In partnership with MSL and Premier Data Services, Inc., the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) continues its stewardship of the Montana CadNSDI on federal lands.

Improvements to the CadNDSDI

The CadNSDI is published with new adjustments on an annual basis according to FGDC Cadastral Publication Standards. It makes use of Montana’s Mapping Control Framework as the basis of its coordinates in areas where mapping control is available. Grants are available from the Montana Geospatial Information Act grant program to collect survey control to be used in future CadNSDI adjustments. The Mapping Control theme lead accepts survey control on an ongoing basis, and if applicable, this control will be used in future adjustments to improve the accuracy of the CadNSDI.

The CadNSDI supports the development of Montana’s Cadastral Framework, Administrative Boundaries Framework, and other Montana framework datasets built upon the PLSS geography. Below is an example of improved Cadastral parcel data following an adjustment of the CadNSDI in that area.

  • Fairfield, MT - Cadastral parcel data before and after December 2014 adjustment


Adjusting Your Data to the CadNSDI

If your own data partially aligns to the CadNSDI, you may want to adjust your data to the latest publication. In addition to the applications described in the section below, you can use the following services in ArcMap or in ArcGIS Online to visualize and query where adjustments have taken place across the state as well as the status of current and future adjustments.

Montana CadNSDI Projects - a map of proposed, in progress, and completed adjustment projects

CadNSDI Adjustment L inks - vectors representing the distance between PLSS Points from the previous and current years

Metadata at a Glance - a web service comprising townships attributed with a Revised Date field indicating the date of adjustment for each township

Via the Data Download, access multiple resources to aid in adjusting your data. These include:

  • Customized conflation tools for semi-automated adjustments
  • PLSS Points in the State Plane Coordinate System for 2016 and 2017 CadNSDI publications to use in conflation
  • Adjustment links representing the movement between the past and current year's CadNSDI to use with the conflation tools
  • Sample materials and exercises to guide you through different adjustment processes


Montana CadNSDI Story Map

Explore completed areas of adjustment, learn about how the CadNSDI is adjusted, and discover how other datasets rely on its accuracy.

PLSS Story Map

Published by the PLSS Work Group, this story map provides an overview of the PLSS and its components.

Montana CadNSDI Projects

The map below shows Public Land Survey townships in Montana where CadNDSI accuracy improvements have been proposed, are in progress, or have been completed, as well as where mapping control is available. Improvements to the CadNSDI occur through adjustments using survey control data. To contribute survey control to be used in future adjustments or to propose a new area for adjustment, email

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