What is it about?

Triangulation is a surveying method on which earlier maps made were based. The primary triangulation network of the first 1:500 urban map of the city of València (Spain). It spanned from 1929 to 1944 and resulted in 421 maps covering about 174 square kilometres. It is obtained a set of transformation parameters to convert the coordinates of 1929 to current coordinates based on the European Terrestrial Reference System of 1989 (ETRS89). Results showed the high quality of the 1929 work.

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Why is it important?

The study involved bibliographic work, field trips, and computer programming in a demanding research effort. As a result, we gained considerable insight into the fundamentals of the observational and computational processes of the network that were originally conducted almost one century ago. The quality and detail of the original survey documentation allowed us to reprocess the original data. The plane coordinate system of the 1929 network is local, the fieldwork and computations conducted in this study allow us to integrate the urban map with modern spatial databases stored in global coordinate systems. In summary, the map of 1929 is a cartographic gem that can now be integrated with other municipal spatial databases for urban planning, cadastral and even legal purposes.


The use of geographic data from early maps is a common approach to understanding urban geography as well as to study the evolution of cities over time. However, the right procedure to integrate old paper maps into modern geospatial databases in digital format is a demanding task that researchers must face with to benefit from such a cartographic legacy. It is not unreasonable to say that every individual map requires a unique, tailored workflow which makes the integration a non-trivial task. The specific goal of this paper is to provide a means for the integration of the first 1:500 urban map of the city of València (Spain).

María Jesús Jiménez-Martínez
Universitat Politecnica de Valencia

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This page is a summary of: Triangulation network of 1929–1944 of the first 1:500 urban map of València, Survey Review, January 2019, Taylor & Francis, DOI: 10.1080/00396265.2018.1564599.
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