Luxatlas is a digital and interactive historical town atlas of Luxembourg, based on open-source technology. It is published on the website “Luxatlas.lu” since 2019 and has since then been continuously expanded in terms of content and technically developed further. The atlas shows the urban development of the town since the mid-16th century in the form of digital and interactive maps, historical images and photos, and explanatory texts. Up to three freely selectable map layers can be combined with each other when using the atlas; a total of 64 maps are available for this purpose. The digitised and georeferenced maps have been extensively rectified, in part by means of thousands of digital pinpoints (GCPs), so that they can be superimposed on each other in a precisely fitting manner. Story maps were developed for individual thematic focal points, which guide users virtually through the historical urban space in a guided or freely selectable sequence.
Luxatlas.lu documents historical processes of change diachronically for research purposes, for people interested in history (public history) and for municipal departments (supporting preparations for urban development projects). But the pure visualisation of research results is not the main focus of the project. The town atlas itself serves as an important tool for the acquisition of new knowledge. It is only by means of cartographic representations that comparisons can be made of various historical development processes in Luxembourg City. The superimposition of
different cartographic time layers enables users to visualise and analyse specific questions individually. The town atlas therefore offers a basis for further research on urban development. It is only through the cartographic presentation of historical, architectural, economic, and urban development information that the distribution of certain spatial phenomena becomes visible and can then be interpreted and analysed. In this way the interactive map becomes a central instrument for acquiring additional knowledge.
With regard to source criticism, it is important to point out that the atlas does not provide any “original” sources, even though the user may not be given this impression. In fact, all the original sources used have been digitally revised and transformed to make them usable for the web atlas.
This process and the individual transformation steps are documented transparently on the website (“Quellengrundlage” and “Methodik” on the homepage).
- Ville de Luxembourg
- Lëtzebuerg City Museum
- Archives nationales de Luxembourg
- Administration du cadastre et de la topographie (Luxembourg)
- Commission luxembourgeoise pour la coopération avec l’UNESCO
- Archives Municipales (Ville de Luxembourg)