Open Data

Alberta Land Inventory (ALI) and Canada Land Inventory (CLI) Landform


This dataset is produced for the Government of Alberta and is available to the general public. Please consult the Distribution Information of this metadata for the appropriate contact to acquire this dataset.

Alberta Land Inventory (ALI) and Canada Land Inventory (CLI) Landform consists of a single polygon feature class with associated attributes. These attributes describe the landform polygons in terms of parent geologic material, surface form, generalized texture, and slope. The attribution includes the original ALI/CLI coding as well as the equivalent Physical Land Classification (PLC) codes.

CLI and ALI landform polygons were photo interpreted in the 1960's and 70's. The linework was transferred to mylar overlay and 319 maps were published at a scale of 1:63360, using the National Topographic Series (NTS) maps as a base. The structure of the map symbols is slightly different for the two series. There is additional free-form text on the CLI landform maps to describe the direction of glacial movement and presence of specific geomorphic features such as eskers but the information is essentially the same for the two series. In some cases, a single base map may have both the initial CLI landform mapping on part of the map sheet and subsequent ALI landform mapping on the remainder of the same sheet.

These published hardcopy maps and mylars were later scanned into .tif images and then processed into a single ArcInfo coverage. Scanned images were georeferenced, cleaned and vectorized. The resulting landform polygons were attributed and merged into a single coverage, using permanent water bodies from Alberta's Base Features Hydrography Polygons as a base. The ALI and CLI landform polygon feature class is derived from this merged coverage.


October 31, 2017


Title and Dataset Information

Alternative Title

Alberta Land Inventory (ALI) and Canada Land Inventory (CLI) Landform

Date Modified


Update Frequency

Every 2 months

Publisher / Creator Information


Environment and Parks

Subject Information

Start Date


End Date


Resource Dates

Date Created


Date Added to catalogue


Date Issued


Date Modified



Usage / Licence

Usage Considerations

Competition for land for alternative uses, and increased government economic and social planning in rural areas, made apparent the need for improved knowledge of the productive capability of Canada's lands, their location and extent. To meet this need, a co-operative federal-provincial program was developed, namely the Canada Land Inventory (CLI). This federally sponsored project was administered under the Agricultural Rehabilitation and Development Act (ARDA) of June 1961. The Alberta portion of the CLI land capability classification was initiated in 1964 and completed by March 31, 1973. The Alberta Land Inventory (ALI) program was subsequently established to provide land capability information for the northern area of the province that was not mapped during the Canada Land Inventory (CLI) project. The ALI program, funded by Alberta Environment, was initiated in 1974 and completed in 1979.

The Canada Land Inventory (CLI), being a national comprehensive survey of the capability and use of land, was designed to provide a basis for planning the use of resources and land, and to encourage use of this information in land development planning at municipal, provincial and federal levels of government. The CLI and ALI landform maps were developed to provide basic information required to produce land capability maps. The objective of these two base mapping programs was to delineate relatively homogeneous land units, based on their physical characteristics, and to describe these units such that their suitability for various land uses could be assessed in a standardized manner using a documented methodology.


Contact Name

Alberta Environment and Parks, Government of Alberta