Friday, February 15, 2013

Mapping Damascus Over Time

The city of Damascus has always intrigued me. Maybe because it is the oldest established metropolis in the Levant region and the most continuously inhabited city in the world, or maybe it is because it is in the heart of the Middle East. Regardless of the reason behind this intriguing city, it is interesting to see how the city developed over time from a spatial perspective.  I have compiled a list of eight maps to show how the city developed since the Romans occupied the Levant region of the Middle East.  The first in the series of maps shows the various empires throughout history that helped shaped the city into its early 20th century boundaries.  Then each of the following maps progressively show how Damascus grew over time.  Now with the civil war destroying this city, it would be interesting to see how the city will be altered again.
Map 1: Urban Evolution of the City of Damascus - Roman Era until the 1960's

Map 2: French cartographic map of Damascus in 1929

Map 3: Cultural Map of the city of Damascus in 1936

Map 4: Growth of Damascus from 1936 to 1994

Map 5: Population Growth of Damascus, 1981 to 2000

Map 6: The City of Damascus in 2004
Map 7: The inner-city of Damascus, Present Day

Map 8: Present day satellite imagery of Damascus


Map Sources:

Map 1: Al-Qattan, N. (2002) Litigants and Neighbours: The Communal Topography of
           Ottoman Damascus Comparative Studies in Society and History Vol 44 No 3, p 511-533.
Map 2: Bureau Topographique des Troupes Francaises du Levant (1929) Damas available from  
           http://historiccities.huji.ac.il/syria/damascus/maps/tfl_1929_damascus.html
Map 3: a) Map - Al-Qattan, N. (2002) Litigants and Neighbours: The Communal Topography of
           Ottoman Damascus Comparative Studies in Society and History Vol 44 No 3, p 511-533.
           b) Religion overlay - Khoury, P.S. (1984) Syrian Urban Politics in Transition: The Quarters of
           Damascus during the French Mandate International Journal of Middle East
           Studies Vol 16 No 4 p 507-540 (1984).
Map 4: El-Ibrahim, K. (2001) Spontaneous Settlements around the City of Damascus
           Damascus: University of Damascus, p 80Map 5: El-Ibrahim, K. (2001) Spontaneous Settlements around the City of Damascus
           Damascus: University of Damascus, p. 71
Map 6: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Districts_of_damascus.gif
Map 7: http://www.studio-basel.com/assets/files/files/21_urban_development_of_damascus_web.pdf
Map 8: Astrium Geo. 2012. http://www.imagekind.com/Damascus-Syria--Satellite-Image-art?
           IMID=5cd73cc1-6559-42a0-a1c0-b1d745c9d45f

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