Posted tagged ‘maps’

1952 Map Documents Beginning of “Chocolate City”

June 29, 2012

Lately, it seems like a day doesn’t go by without another news article about gentrification in the Washington area. While the focus in 2012 is on how the city is becoming whiter, sixty years ago the buzz was about the growing black population in Washington and its role in the upcoming presidential election between Republican candidate Dwight D. Eisenhower the Democratic candidate Adlai Stevenson.

The map below, published in the Baltimore Sun on November 2, 1952 (two days before the election), illustrates the city of Washington’s changing demographics from 1930 to 1950. The accompanying text is below the image.

“Segregation … in Washington, D.C. has become an issue in the current political campaign, and abolishment of segregation has been promised by both parties. This map, based on a District of Columbia census tract[s], shows the white and non-white areas. The solid black areas denote a population of over 50% non-white since [the] 1930 census; the checked portions show the same percentage since the 1940 census, and the lined parts indicate the same percentage since the 1950 census. Each dot represents housing for 100 non-whites in predominantly white areas.”


Improving Google Maps via Map Maker

May 10, 2012

Google map of Park View showing the before image (in green) and the current image (green and purple)

Very recently I discovered that it is possible to not only alert Google to errors or corrections on their maps, but it is also possible to submit changes and additions directly to Google via their Google Map Maker. With a Google account, you can make changes on Google maps and submit them for review.

The review process may take a few days until a “trusted reviewer” looks at the pending change to make a determination. The reviewer may also contact the submitter for additional documentation to support the proposed change.

In the example above, you can see how I was able to get the boundaries of Park View changed from the green area to the purple area over several days and with more than one email back and forth.Yet, while getting general neighborhood boundaries correct is fun and highly visible, the real benefit to submitting changes directly to Google is in the smaller details.

The map detail below includes three new changes based on recent submissions. The Park View Recreation Center now spells the neighborhood with two words, DC Reynolds has been added, and Lion’s Fine Wine & Spirits has been updated with the status changed from closed to open.

I think that being able to submit changes directly to Google, especially for businesses, is great. With minimal effort and a little patience, anyone can help keep neighborhood information on Google maps accurate, useful, and current.


M-A-P Reading

April 4, 2012

If you liked the DC neighborhood typographical map, then you will enjoy the greater detail of this lovely road M-A-P of D.C.

Neighborhood snapshot of Typographical DC Map

Info: This map accurately depicts the streets and highways, parks, neighborhoods, coastlines, and physical features of Washington DC using nothing but type. Every single piece of type was manually placed, a process that took hundreds of hours to complete.

The map is based on place names and geography as they appear in Open Street Map. These are offset prints on 100lb stock (semigloss finish).

Price: $30

Order at: Axis Maps Store

Working with Metro for a Better Station Area Map

January 27, 2012

Station Area Map with numbers indicating where additional features could be located

One issue I’ve been working on for a very long time is getting the illuminated Station Area Maps at the Georgia Avenue-Petworth Station updated to include information I consider to be clear omissions. I began this process in October 2010 and thought I’d made some progress when WMATA committed to include Park View on future maps with updated maps scheduled for installation by March 2011. Well, clearly that did not happen. So, I’ve dug in again and have reopened the conversation with Metro.

While my initial observation was that Park View was inappropriately omitted from the map as Petworth, Columbia Heights, and Mt. Pleasant were all included, upon inspecting the map more closely I discovered that there were several opportunities to make the map better. Below are six significant improvements I noticed.

  1. Include Park View to show the location of the neighborhood;
  2. Show the location of the MPD 4D Substation at 750 Park Rd., NW;
  3. Include the Bruce-Monroe Park at Irving and Georgia Ave.;
  4. Show the location of the Cesar Chavez Public Charter School (770 Kenyon Street);
  5. Show the location of the Lincoln’s Cottage National Historic Site; and
  6. Include Armed Forces Retirement Home on the map to identify its location.

In each of these cases, the type of information suggested is in keeping with the categories of information WMATA currently includes on their maps. I’ll be sure to post follow ups as my conversations with Metro advance.


Do You Like Maps? Then You’ll Enjoy the USGS Historical Topographic Map Collection

January 6, 2012

(Detail from a 1965 topographic map of northwest Washington)

For those of you who like maps, I was recently made aware of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) historical topographic map collection, many of which are online. In searching for maps of the D.C. area I was able to find two relatively recent maps showing neighborhood names. The detail above is from a 1965 map of Northwest. The other map was a 1971 update of the 1965 map.


Adding a Twist to the Art of Reading a D.C. Map

February 4, 2011

Here’s something fun for the end the week.

D.C.’s eight wards are composed of 100+ neighborhoods — roughly 131 of them depending upon how you count them.  If you would like to see all those neighborhoods typographically mapped, you’ll enjoy the crafty City Neighborhood Poster series from Ork Posters!. Park View is among the neighborhoods that fit ably within their borders.

Colors Options…

    Classic Black & White
    Patriotic Red & Blue


    Crackberry Print
    Aboretum Green
    Monumental Gray

Check out the DC Neighborhood Maps [Ork Posters!]


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