World Topographic Map updates for October

October 18, 2013 Paul Heersink

The World Topographic Map has been recently updated with a large number of Community Map contributions. Check out our story map to see them on the map.

The World Topographic Map was recently updated with many improvements to the Canadian content. Thirteen new communities were published and another 18 were updated with new content from across the country.

For a quick map tour of the latest updates in Canada, visit our Community Maps of Canada Tracking Map. A complete listing of what’s new this month appears at the end of this blog post.

Starting in the west, two new participants from British Columbia were published. Dawson Creek, BC is home to about 11,000 people and marks the start of the Alaska Highway that runs for 2,200 km (1400 mi) to the north and west. About a six hour drive to the south is Quesnel, another new contributor. Quesnel sits on the banks of the Fraser River.

Next door in Alberta, four new communities now have their data on the World Topographic Map. Beaumont and Leduc are about 20 km (12 mi) apart and a short way from the City of Edmonton, the provincial capital. Both communities were settled in the late 1800s. Leduc was also the site of a major crude oil discovery in 1947 that started a petroleum boom in the province. Further to the south sits Airdrie, just outside of Calgary. It's another new contributor and one of the fastest growing communities in Canada.

A short drive to the north of Airdrie is Olds College – an agricultural college situated in central Alberta. It was established in 1911 and is the first Canadian college contributor to the World Topographic Map. Their map includes buildings, gardens, feedlots and fields – not something that you would typically see in our usual contributor data.

Figure 1: Olds College at 1:2,257

Yorkton is the third community from Saskatchewan to have its content published on the World Topographic Map. It's home to about 17,000 people in east-central Saskatchewan and the Yorkton Film Festival, an annual event in the community since 1950.

Skipping over a few provinces east, we come to Ontario. Sault Ste. Marie is one of two cities with that name that face each other across the international border, separated by the St. Marys River that flows from Lake Superior to Lake Huron. Sault Ste. Marie, ON is the larger of the two communities and is the home of the Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre.

Further southeast, on the shores of Lake Ontario is Quinte West, a municipality that includes Trenton, Frankford and a number of smaller communities. It also home to a major Canadian Forces base and the start of the Trent-Severn Waterway. Further along the lake sits the United Counties of Leeds and Grenville. Largely a rural community, Leeds and Grenville includes the world famous Thousand Islands situated in the St. Lawrence River and encompasses a number of smaller, rural communities.

Follow the St. Lawrence River downstream past the island of Montreal and you will find the community of Repentigny in the province of Quebec. In 1677, it had a population of 30; in 2011 it's population was 82,000. Further to the north is the community of Rouyn-Noranda. It's contributions match those of its already published neighbor, Val-d’Or.

Figure 2: Repentigny, QC at 1:9,028

Finally, on the eastern edge of North America, the community of Mount Pearl, NL joins it's already published (and updated with this release) neighbour St. John’s with its own content. Mount Pearl is Newfoundland and Labrador’s second largest city and hosts the annual Frosty Festival every February when the temperature averages a high of a relatively balmy (by Canadian standards) 0.4C (32.7F).

Newly published communities:

Revised and updated communities:

About the Author

Paul Heersink

Paul Heersink is a cartographer and Production Manager of Esri Canada’s Community Maps Program: an initiative that is aiming to build a seamless topographic basemap using contributor data. He has over 15 years of cartographic experience, working in both the public and private sectors. Paul has always been interested in mapping and drew his own atlas at the age of 10. He took a detour in his career through the fields of psychology and social work before returning to cartography.

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