Edinburgh is a great city to be a geologist in. So much rock is exposed within the city bounds and there is a considerable variety in lithology, if not geological age. While the commanding heights of the seven hills (Arthur’s Seat, Castle Rock, Calton, Craiglockhart (west or east, take your pick), Corstorphine, Braids, Blackford) dominate the skyline, the deep valleys between that were carved out by the drainage of glacial meltwater also offer many fine exposures. If these sites are a bit remote and dank, then some might chose to become a geological boulevardier among the magnificent buildings of the UNESCO World Heritage site with some help from the free PDF leaflets from Lothian and Borders GeoConservation
I was chuffed to receive a free copy of the new double-sided 1:20000 Urban Nature map of Edinburgh produced by Social Good, which includes the Local Geodiversity Sites. Edinburgh Geological Society contributed towards the production of the map, along with many other local and national bodies. I’m awaiting the arrival of the Glasgow map and will do a fuller review when I’ve got both. Maps are also available for London, Newcastle and Amsterdam. Social Good also have some publications on thinking about public spaces in the urban realm, which form an important adjunct to the more familiar access debates in the wider countryside.
Given the sudden and unexpected limitations on travel, these are very timely maps and offer much more than just the natural world. Paths, indoor rock-climbing gyms and the ‘blue spaces’ all feature. The back side has a mass of infographics for each city. Even if you are not based in one of the cities covered, just viewing these maps as ideas about urban cartography could be useful in a range of disciplines. To be continued…
[…] Also on the maps are linework for cycle routes, walking routes of various types and a general set of point information for activities. Not all of these are outdoor sites, as climbing centres are marked, along with outdoor shops and bike shops. This is quite an excellent way to bring together many more elements of the infrastructure for the urban microadventurer. The thought that has gone into the maps does promote the laudable aims of the wider urban good project to empower people. By identifying sites for activities such as outdoor swimming and BMX tracks, it guides people to where they can carry out certain pursuits and, just as importantly, where they might meet like-minded fellow enthusiasts. Such information is important for visitors or those moving to a new city. The reverse of each sheet offers ideas about city-specific things to do and additional maps, diagrams and infographics for each city. Edinburgh has a lot of geological information, including the Local Geodiversity Sites. […]