Land use history of central Lule: a case study in the use of historical maps together with modern geographic municipal information

2016-10-14T05:38:51Z (GMT) by Lundberg, Christian Peterson, Lynette
The modern Lule harbour-side dates back to 1649 when the old city was abandoned because its harbour-side and approaches had become too shallow to be useful. This shallowing, due to glacio-isostatic rebound, affects the new town also, but the results have been mitigated by coastal engineering. As a result of uplift and engineering, former harbour-side land is now far enough from the present shoreline for any maritime artifacts that might lie beneath them to be unsuspected.We report the outcome of a successful Monash University - Lule University project designed to identify such former harbour-side land parcels by digitizing and georeferencing a series of historical maps dating from the mid eighteenth century. The method has wide application. Typically, the spatial database built using the approach we have exemplified will be readily incorporated into official spatial datasets to be used in decision support. Thus, planning authorities charged with both re-development permit application appraisal and protection of buried heritage items can identify land parcels that would be likely to have buried artifacts, and places within the parcel that are most likely to produce surprises. Land re-developers would be pleased to have access to such information because of the extra scope they can derive for coping with the disruptions to excavation and building works that arise when heritage items are unearthed.