If the 18½×24-inch, $4,000, limited-edition Earth atlas wasn’t exclusive or enormous enough for you, how about the six-foot-by-four-and-a-half-foot, 264-pound, $100,000, 31-copy platinum edition? Klencke’s got some competition, I see. Coverage in the spring 2011 issue of ArcNews.
On paper, the idea of National Geographic’s Giant Traveling Maps seems almost ludicrous. These are truly giant maps — 26 feet by 33 to 35 feet (8m by 10-10.7 m) — that ship folded and rolled in tubes 10 to 12 feet (3-3.7 m) long that weigh around 145 pounds (66 kg). There are maps of North America, South America, Africa and Asia, with the Pacific Ocean coming later in 2011, but you can’t buy one. There are only 10 maps in existence. You can, however, rent one: National Geographic loans them out to schools and other facilities. They won’t fit in a classroom, but have to be unfolded and unrolled in a gymnasium or something similarly large. The maps are made of vinyl: they’re meant to be walked on, but wearing socks, not shoes. It costs schools $480 to rent one for two weeks; for others it costs $700. Because what could be better than a ginormous map, than a portable ginormous map that you can have delivered?
(I have no idea why I didn’t follow up on the Contours blog post about it from October 2008. I mean I flagged it in my RSS reader … )
British Columbia’s Challenger Map is by no means the only very large relief map to be hidden away in storage. The San Francisco Chronicle has the story of a relief map of California that was once displayed in San Francisco’s ferry terminal. Formally called Paradise in Panorama at the time, it was far larger than the Challenger Map: the article says it was twice as long as two football fields, which would put it at 720 feet (220 metres), or eight times the size of the Challenger Map along the long axis. Unveiled in 1924, the map has sadly been cut into sections and held in storage since 1960, with nowhere to display it and no funds to restore it. The Chronicle calls it the quintessential white elephant: “too valuable to scrap, but too expensive to keep.” Thanks to M. for the tip.
Don’t look now, but the Gettysburg National Military Park’s defunct Electric Map may be making a comeback of sorts: the presentation was recorded before the map was dismantled earlier this year, and the Park plans to show it alongside another… • Continue reading this entry.
An update on the Challenger Map, a portion of which is now being used “to familiarize visitors and security officers from other parts of the country with the intricate, geographical contours of the Olympic security zone,” from the Globe and… • Continue reading this entry.
The amazing Challenger Map, the giant relief map of British Columbia that was on display at the Pacific National Exhibition until 1997 but has since languished in storage, is back on display, sort of. The Vancouver Sun reports that… • Continue reading this entry.
Curious Expeditions visits the Mapparium, the three-story walkthrough glass globe that was built in 1935 for the headquarters of the Christian Science Monitor; they also have a Flickr photoset. Via Cartophilia. Previously: The Mapparium…. • Continue reading this entry.
Last month, the Armed Services Inauguration Committee revealed to the public a 40×40-foot map used to plan the inauguration (via Vector One); another view is here (thumbnail above; via MapHist). New Google Earth imagery for Washington, D.C. finally de-pixellates… • Continue reading this entry.
Those of you watching NBC or MSNBC for your dose of election coverage last night may have noticed that they transformed the ice rink at the Rockefeller Center into an election map; apparently they did this the last time,… • Continue reading this entry.
We’ve seen this scale model of Shanghai before, but Neatorama provides some more information: “On the third floor of the Shanghai Urban Planning Museum, there is what probably is the world’s largest scale model of a city. The room-sized… • Continue reading this entry.
Like many large map installations, the Electric Map of the Battle of Gettysburg has gone the way of the dodo. The 30×30-foot map has been illustrating troop movements during the battle using more than 600 light bulbs since it opened… • Continue reading this entry.
The New York Times has more about the continuing efforts to restore at least part of the so-called Texaco Map, the terrazo map from the 1964-65 World’s Fair; see also this related blog entry about the return of a missing… • Continue reading this entry.
Don Young writes to tell us about the Challenger Map’s new website, which means that my old links are now broken. “This is a renewed site from the Challenger Map Foundation updating the status of the map and the… • Continue reading this entry.
Melissa writes, “Since you bring it up, here’s an update on the Challenger Map” — which, you will recall, has been in storage since 1997. From yesterday’s Vancouver Sun: Now efforts are about to begin to restore the 196-piece… • Continue reading this entry.
The large, 12×22-metre Living Map, a showpiece of the apparently defunct “B.C. Experience” exhibition in Victoria, British Columbia, is being moved to an agriculturally themed tourist attraction in nearby Saanich. (This map should not be confused with the older… • Continue reading this entry.
A highlight of Vancouver’s Pacific National Exhibition grounds was George Challenger’s massive — at 26×24 metres — exaggerated-relief map of British Columbia, which was on display at the B.C. Pavillion until that building was torn down in 1997. Saved… • Continue reading this entry.
Boing Boing reports that, at the World Children’s Festival in Washington, DC this past weekend, Lego set up a “building event” in which kids contributed to a giant Lego mosaic map of the United States. (Thumbnail at right; see… • Continue reading this entry.
Cartography draws our attention to the Living Map, a huge, three-dimensional map of British Columbia now on display as part of the “B.C. Experience” exhibition that just opened in Victoria’s Crystal Garden. The 40-foot-by-74-foot map even models the curvature… • Continue reading this entry.