The Map Collection of Olin & Uris Libraries just acquired a unique 1966 Atlantic City Land Use Map thanks to the efforts of Prof. Emeritus John Reps, CRP. Peter Karabashian, a licensed Professional Planner and preparer of the map, who is a former student of Prof. Reps, and Tom Sykes, an architect, owner of the map, graciously agreed that the most appropriate place for it would be in the map collection at Olin Library and generously donated it to us.
The map serves as an excellent example as to how land use maps were developed when computer technology was not available. The process was completely manual and extremely labor intensive. In addition, quantifying the individual categories of the land uses was also a daunting challenge which required utilizing a calibrated planimeter to manually calculate the size of each lot and record its land use. The entire city was “walked” and surveyed lot by lot. While the field work was being completed, draftsmen using the translucent linen drafting material prepared the base map at the scale of 1:500 by copying the individual tax maps that were reduced to that scale. The value of using the linen material was that it was more resilient than paper and could be carefully erased if an error was discovered.
Upon completion the land use field notes recorded on the 20″ x 24″ tax map sheets were transposed to the base map previously referenced in accordance with a specific color code which used lighter colors for the less intensive land uses and darker colors for the more intensive. Thus, one could readily discern the patterns of land uses on the Land Use Map by the intensity of the color patterns that were easily discernible.
The newly acquired map will be sent for conservation treatment and then catalogued and made part of the collection.