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Thursday, 1 August 2013

Creating A1 Size Map of Venezuela

Map of Venezuelan autopistas (highways) and major roads
Today, the post is a sidetrack of my usual blog posts. Since late April I have been embarking on this massive map project on creating A1 Size map of Venezuela. The purpose of the map would be:
  • Showing up-to-date topographic and political features of Venezuela
  • Highlighting key features of Venezuela geographically (i.e. through maps) that have made impact past and present
I expect the project to be completed (when the map is pushed out) around December 2013. Official start date is 1/6/2013. No definite dates are in placed as it is hard for me to commit. Project title : Venezuelan Map Project
Venezuela Map at the 8th Day into Project
8th Day into the Project (8/6/2013), after assembling the geospatial data


Stage 1: Collection of geospatial data (April- June 2013)
  • Identifying the geographical datasets (e.g. terrain, road network, national park polygons)
  • Creating a proper metadata for the datasets (metadata is data of 'data')- including the currency, sources, restrictions and others
  • Determination of suitable Map Projection : Mercator Projection was Chosen
  • Placing the datasets into one geodatabase (an ESRI geodatabase)
Stage 2: Map clean up (June 2013 - December 2013)
  • Adding all necessary geographical datasets and arranging in appropriate order (i.e, roads must be over rivers)
  • Classifying the datasets into proper hierarchies (e.g. road classification from highways to tracks)
  • Removals of unnecessary datasets for the project (e.g. delete residential streets in the map)
  • Choosing the right symbology for the datasets (e.g. choosing the right colours for terrain)
  • Place text labels and modifications may be needed for positioning.
  • Adding map grid
Stage 3: Map print-out (December 2013)
  • Export ESRI (GIS software used for the map production) map to Adobe Illustrator
  • Final complex touch-ups on the maps
  • Adding images and notes on key geographical features of Venezuela (i.e. Angel Falls pop-up box or significance of Sabaneta, Barinas)
  • Send for printing
Venezuelan Roads in Zulia State
Road classification around Lake Maracaibo


  • Difficulty in getting good, consistent quality of geospatial data for Venezuela
  • Unfamiliarity of Venezuela road hierarchies, significance of other geographic features
  • Time constraints as I have multiple projects to do
  • Getting bogged down in trivial mapping works.
  • Uncertainty of project termination
  • Cost involved in printing
  • Suitability for the targeted audience (is it just for me?)
Hence, this what I have been doing in past few months. If I am called upon to do similar projects related to Malaysia, these are the  procedures I follow and the challenges I will face 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for your comment. How does this practically help you in future mapping works?