And least but not last, the actual photomap.

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A year after Warsaw Uprising a documentation of actual state of buldings was done.
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There is a photoplan of 1935.
Blue shapes are the actual buildings.

Urban structure didn't change much since the plan of Lindley.

There are main elements easy to distinguish as flashlights on the map.

Pixelization of the map allows us to concentrate the investigation on main elements (as mentioned above).



President Starzynski wanted to plan the development of Warsaw. In 1935 he asked the municipal office to prepare it.
The hollow lines of buildings show the actual map of 2010.

In scale of Old Town it doesn't give any data on the urban structure. It distinguishes the most important public buildings.


LINDLEY MAP 1890-1896

Lindley map belongs to the most precise maps of Warsaw.
Dark buildings are the trace of 2010 situation.

Two thoughts come directly into one's eyes.
First is, that so much place is wasted nowadays in comparison to original urban structure. In the end of XIXc the overcrowding of Warsaw was on standard level, so nobody thought of setting up any modernity. The ideas of hygiene, light and green spaces kill the spirit of the Old Town- it just lacks the profound detailing that we know from real cities (Napoli, Barcelona, London). Contemporary Old Town of Warsaw doesn't give us the chance to develop the sensitivity of world reading behaviour. Who said, that every place on earth should be bright and healthy?
Second is the superficiality of what we see in the Old Town. The citywalls were covered with liveful buildings, the Barbakan wasn't there, urban structure was much denser (as mentioned before), and the Market Square served the people, not only the oligarchs.
We should learn from our ancestors how to let some things go smoothly.



The map of water system development from 1855 presents mainly its own subject.
Red buildings are the trace of 2010 situation.

Its main information is the number and place of system's connection to buildings, and places of coming out.



The plan of Nicholson was created in 1831 just after the November Uprising.
Light grey buildings are the trace of 2010 situation.

As we can see, it has low level of precision. The buildings are presented only in groups creating urban blocks, with street/building proportion wider than in reality. What is interesting, the urban blocks are presented as flat blocks a little bit extruded (narrow shadow marks it) over the street level.



Chosen buildings were described on basic/touristic level.

The descriptions contain visual information, they are assigned to drawing, and they give general overview of the building- time, place, and people connected to their history.



The map is created in a way that we can find features, important from various point of work.

among chosen buildings there is one, that reaches 7 storeys. It is located in northern part of Market Square.

among described buildings we can find those built in chosen styles/ architectural periods. Local Rennaisance buildings are randomly located around the square, and their common presence is grounded in high level of preservation/low level of development in Old Town area after big fire in 1607.

Further development of database could consider among others preservation data, potential development informations, functional structure (especially useful in planning functional clusters). The possibility of extending the database is infinite. The question is only the purpose of the database.


Warsaw Old Town interactive map

Warsaw Old Town interactive map.

Piotr Baszyński, Edmond Hayek Tomasz Kujawski, Kiryl Karvat, Michał Miszkurka, Semir Poturak, Jan Rubel, Lech Włochyński

Architecture for Society of Knowledge,
Geographic Information Systems.
2010 - 2011

Warsaw Old Town GIS Database.

The main idea of our work is to initialize the process of creating a database, storing information related to the Old Town, which will connect it with geographical informations. Our task in this process is to prepare the skeleton consisting of historic and contemporary plans of the Old Town and exemplary descriptions of the selected tenement houses located around the Market Square. The geographical database is planned to be filled with more information about other buildings, so that in future it could serve as a complete and trustworthy source of information about the Old Town and also as a model example of this kind of database.

Old Town plans used in project.

The database is prepared in arcMap, and it consists of overlapping drawing and the vector drawing of the Old Town.

1. Warsaw plan by T.E. Nicholson from 1831. Unprecise, and showing general overview about the city.

2. Warsaw plan by William Lindley, 1891 - 1896. Showing precise lines of buildings, created for the development of Warsaw's water system.

3. Warsaw Plan, 1935 (done for president Starzynski request)- planned development of Warsaw.

In area of Old Town it shows only blocks between streets.

4. Orthophotomap of Warsaw, 1935.

5. Orthopfotomap of Warsaw, 1945. Just after WWII the destruction of the city was documented from the air.

6. Current orthophotomap of Old Town, 2010.

Description of the selected buildings.

The second part of the Warsaw Old Town interactive map are descriptions of the buildings in the area. Descriptions prepared by our team refers to selected tenement houses surrounding the market square. Descriptions in pdf format, contain descriptive and visual information about them.

1. Selected tenement houses.

2. Exemplary building description layout

This layout will serve in future for developing the database and incluidng more buildings.

Chosen informations will serve to build functional, historical, infrastructural, architectural maps, if they would be developed. We could build the maps underlining the amount of stories, pharmacies, restaurants etc, for the basic analytical work on the Old Town, or any other areas in any other cities in the world.