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ARQ (Santiago)

versión On-line ISSN 0717-6996

ARQ (Santiago)  no.80 Santiago abr. 2012 

ARQ, n. 80 Representations, Santiago, April 2012, p. 62-75.


Cartographic Representation as the Production of Knowledge
Theoretic Reflections Regarding the Creation of the Map of Santiago in 1910

Germán Hidalgo *, José Rosas *, Wren Strabucchi *

* Professor, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile.


Can a mere drawing produce knowledge? The elaboration of a map that portraits an old city –one that doesn't exist anymore– tells about that natural condition of architectural practice.

Key words: urbanism – Chile, territory, Santiago, survey, urban landscape, plans.

"With regards to the knowledge and interests introduced by maps, it is important to note that they are neither timeless nor supratemporal, but are rather created as history unfurls. This does not decrease the value of their truths, but rather offers us the key to employ the entire range of interpretative and analytic tools. Every map has its time and its place, its point of view, its perspective, and, when read correctly, they offer us the key to understanding not only the world as it was configured but also the orientation and purposes of those who constructed that vision of the world. Hence, a history of spatial representation, of cartography, is always one of a creative process as well".
Karl Schlögel. In Space, we Read the Time.

The production of new knowledge in urban studies and in the understanding of the phenomenon that is taking place in the city find in graphic representation –among many instruments and tools of analysis– an investigation method that is not only pertinent and adequate (seeing as it allows for the integration of a variety of dimensions of the object of study), but that also makes possible a true understanding of the reality observed and, consequently, a certain ability to operate upon it.

A type of knowledge emerges from mapping spatial relationships, processes and structures of a determined territory; from information offered by a variety of primary and secondary sources, and even descriptions of the city from different texts, historic papers and geographical documents; and from producing a complete vision of the whole.(1)

In fact, in the realm of maps, it is not only possible to represent an entire area over a specific time span, but also to observe in that space specific configurations that are registered in that urban and territorial system.

Along this line of argument, works of cartographic documentation, as the academic Jose Ignacio Gonzalez has said, "whatever their scale or type should comply with a variety of analysis and synthesis processes, regulated by a series of stages that begin with the compilation and processing of information and the elaboration of the product. Each of these stages requires the application of an infinite number of methods and techniques" (González, 1988). For this reason, the product of this research is a map which also allows the theoretical discourse to be applied which is explained in the Land Study of the Catalonian regions (Solà-Morales, 1981a) developed by Manuel de Solà-Morales(2), among others, and in which three issues are identified: the identity problem, the culture of description and the drawing problem.

With regards to the first issue, the identity of a territory emerges when an image of that territory is made public and part of the collective knowledge. The duality of the representation's function (knowledge and recognition of the milestones) appears here.

In terms of the culture of description, it becomes necessary to revalidate it as a tool of (re) cognition, especially for its role in the planimetry. As Solà-Morales reveals, "The problem with expressing knowledge with a map is that it means having made an instrument of representation from a drawing, confronting, along with questions of language, the discernment problems that this entails" (Solà-Morales, 1981a). Just as this detailed form of study is used for territorial cartography, an interest in precise description applies equally to the case of Santiago and its scale as a city.

Finally, if "to draw is to select, to select is to interpret and to interpret is to suggest" (Solà-Morales, 1981a), this investigation considers drawing to be the descriptive tool that sifts through and articulates the project idea with the phenomenon of a piece of land.

It is useful to remember, harkening back to Schlögel, that "cartography's fundamental problem, as is well known, involves creating spatial relationships, tridimensional in nature, on a two-dimensional surface" (Schlögel, 2003). Within this scope and with the goal of configuring Santiago's spatial dimension in 1910, it has been necessary to consider elements of urbanization, lot divisions and construction on a scale that allows one to visualize the forms' materials and consequently establish a real connection between the model and reality.

This investigation's(3) goal is to register with a map or a chart this urban phenomenon as more than just a material perception of the whole. Due precisely to this, we would like to produce new knowledge which is sensitive and concretely details the spatial relations that are registered in this physical space.

However, transcription between the city as-is and the city as-represented implies for any form an inherent complexity and difficulty in recreating the observed reality. So much so that here we do not attempt, nor would it be possible, to create an exact technical register of what has been observed or measured, but rather the restitution of an historic moment and some of the spatial relations that existed in a specific area a century ago.

Aside from this, one must consider the problems and difficulties that Latin American realities present us with in terms of institutional materials and the systemization of cartographic registers. Within a context of dispersed primary sources, precariousness and loss of documentation about the object of the study, we would like to give value to the information obtained(4) and the digitalization and vectorization process that has been carried out for this planimetric construction(5) that, due to its size, is presented as an attachment separate from this special edition about representation.

It is especially useful as a spatial reference for the period of study. A variety of natural and artificial aspects have been collected and organized and directly and simultaneously brought together in a single current geographical reference system. If one keeps in mind that, as Marshall says, "Cities exhibit a typical mix of order and diversity: more order than a random aggregate of architecture; more diversity than an artifact crafted by a single hand" (Marshall, 2011), it becomes necessary to select a stable and unified image to understand a determined period of time.

In this realm of historical restitution, one relevant choice has been deciding to use a "large scale". The first challenge is that the buildings, blocks, lots, streets and railways, plazas, public spaces and the rural organization around the city (which is found in a variety of diverse sources created by different institutions and sectors and is unknown material, abandoned and seldom used, and therefore subject to deterioration) are no longer seen and represented as independent isolated events or reduced to a scale in which the forms disappear, but rather are placed for the first time in a vehicle which can contain them and allows their details and the relationships between the parts and the whole to be understood.

"The functions appear to be more important than the use. As a result, urbanism, as practiced and as a discipline, has become extremely abstract, while the distance between planning and that which is finally built continues to grow" (Ibelings, 2008). In this context, the main challenge consisted of revealing that city of which the existing cartography said little and for which, by way of other documents such as catalogues, street surveys and detailed architectural registers, it was possible to bring to light all of this in one unique vehicle.

It coincides with Berger in that "the visible is no more than the sum of the images that the eye creates upon looking. Reality is made visible, as it is perceived. Once captured, perhaps that form of existence that is acquired in the conscience of he who has restored it can never again be renounced" (Berger, 2007).

An investigation of these characteristics –in the words of Schlögel– is "like reading backwards petrified forms" (Schlögel, 2003), since methodologically, in addition to restoring an urban phenomenon and a century-old historic process in a large scale map that allows one to recognize the texture of the places and the forms of the buildings, it not only identifies the problem, but also the pertinent concepts that represent and solidify cartographically the recognizable signs which make it attributable to that specific space and time.

Although it is possible to identify in current representations of the city the main geometry that was a support in the past and, despite the changes, a significant number of important episodes regarding that structure we refer to as the city of the Centennial(6) remain, to construct a map of Santiago in 1910, strictly speaking, is to restore an extinct space.

The work began with partial traces and signs that were revealed to us by the city in a variety of primary and secondary sources such as maps, drawings, paintings, photographs and even texts. It involves the retrospective vision of the city of the past, which started with the study of several layers that had formed in the urban system in question; which leads to a work that is primarily stratigraphic and archeological.

According to Agamben, "we can provisionally refer to as "archeology" that practice which, in all historical investigations, rather than considering the origin considers the emergence of a phenomenon and should, for this reason, face again the sources and tradition" (Agamben, 2010).

In this context, and in hopes of identifying the problem, we have superimposed several inventory maps of the city of Santiago throughout its history(7). This has allowed us to confirm, on the one hand, a long process of accumulation and construction of the urban structure. Order was regularly applied by the grid system, and its variations over time, that developed between 1541 and 1864 (Rosas and Pérez, 2010). On the other hand, we were also able to identify the temporary status when chronological development was altered, marking a point of inflection between physiognomic and technical representations, as occurred in Ernesto Ansart's 1875 plan, and Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna's transformation plan (Pérez and Rosas, 2010).

Later on, from 1889-1890, the Municipality of Santiago charged the engineer Alejandro Bertrand with a complete, detailed, technical survey of the city. It included, among other planimetry, the construction of a wall map (Corvalán, 2008), scale 1: 5,000. It was a document of extraordinary historical value, the loss of which, or destruction of which, demands investigation because its legibility would allow access to the moment when the modern city emerged from the republican city.

In this return to the past, and as always happens when one reads a fragment of a history without the complete context of the event, extensive work to decode the unknown is required. A different investigative attitude is necessary when faced with an uncertain or incomplete story. Much more frequently than one expects, inconsistencies are found between the facts and their explanations developed over time.

In this way, the city of a century ago is a city that, in order to represent it integrally, requires the recovery of its urban morphology, necessitating a scale that allows the whole to be understood, but also a meticulous understanding of the parts and resolution of the enigmas that it reveals to us.

The work of inventorying and transcribing the different discoveries to a map is similar to the work of a detective in that the problem must be clarified and the facts gathered. Just as in a detective's work, where the solution to a problem depends upon the depth with which it is investigated, our work in urban studies entails a double role: on the one hand, discover and reveal the facts that no one has seen and interpret them and, on the other hand, decode the questions that come up to put together the puzzle pieces. "This is puzzling".

As Piglia says, "a detective is there to interpret something that has happened which has left behind certain clues. He can do this job because he doesn't belong to any institution in particular. A detective belongs to neither the world of crime nor the world of law; he is neither a policeman nor a criminal (although he may have similar features)" (Piglia, 1997).

Therefore, the construction of this plane has been, for the most part, the interpretation and the sequence of visualization, recomposition and contextualization of the milestones. The cartographic product that emerges is the result of the tension between the materials with which the map's fragments and clues are interpreted and the forms with which these readings are represented in retrospect. An attempt is made to recognize in one single cartographical document the typological nature of the elements or parts, without losing sight of the identification of the city as a whole.

In a certain sense and now in the role of scrutinizing the urban phenomenon of Santiago in 1910, we find ourselves in a situation where representing the reality of the past requires conjecture since makes current something that was concealed and offered little historical information. With this idea, one must recognize a type of circularity between the discovery and resolution of this conjecture and the graphic document in terms of synthesis and identification of a storyline. This is because in order to correctly interpret what has been discovered, the careful creation of its representation is fundamental. Therefore, the role of the detective has to yield to, as Sennett says, the role of the "goldsmith" (Sennett, 2008).

This route, in the case of the drawing and the representation of the urban phenomenon, is directly associated with the choice of a scale for the work and measures the tangible reality of the map in question. The construction of the map is not only the representation on paper of the buildings (the representation of the milestones once the enigmas and conjectures have been resolved), but also has to be the best expression possible for interpreting the relationships between space and place.

In fact, a large scale introduces the aspect of materiality not only in representing it, since this type of drawing allows for the registration of details from the urban fabric, but also in the reality of the drawing itself which demands precision. A certain connection and concordance between the phenomenon observed and its transcription must be resolved.

The map –from the goldsmith's point of view– offers both a visual representation of the city and a kind of tactility, given the textures and layers it reveals. In this way, both its scale (maintaining consistency in what it wishes to represent) and its construction (a more detailed and meticulous way of looking at the city) must deliver proof of the map's weight and substance as a product, providing as evidence the materialization of the architecture, landscape and city.

The work meets this goal with visual images (drawings, paintings and photographs) that offer new clues about these milestones. In fact, they create a link that allows the phenomenon of the physical city as-is and the city as-represented to unite in a new dimension (Hidalgo, 2010). In addition, as Schlögel indicates, the texts and images on the maps "…are representations of reality. They speak the language of their authors and don't speak of that which their cartographer doesn't want to or doesn't know how to say. A map says more than a thousand words, but it also refrains from saying more than could be said in a thousand words" (Schlögel, 2003).

Therefore, it can be deduced that the investigator, as the detective, has a mission to represent the facts of what really happened as faithfully as possible; and, as goldsmith, must carefully construct and register those facts on the map. Together, they are the two sides of one coin in this work whose product is the resolution of conjecture by way of cartographic representation of an urban phenomenon. The discovery is the value of this graphic document to make accessible the system for which clarification is being sought.

According to Solà-Morales, it becomes necessary "to establish continuity due to great differences in size, work in simultaneously in two scales (that of kilometers and that of centimeters) and appreciate intersections as vital spots and longitudes as necessary attributes of the urban project" (Solà-Morales, 2008). For this reason, a study of the relationship between the urban phenomenon of Santiago at the beginning of the 20th century and the construction of a graphic medium that allows for a complete and detailed understanding of its structure introduces incredibly important methodologies.

This involves analyzing the relationship between the city as a concrete artifact and its planimetric representations, as well as considering the inverse relationship, given that between them a process is established of exchange, of translation and transcription, of intercrossing. In fact, between the city as-is and the city as- represented, the main effort lies in unifying of all of the city's materials in one document. In this way, the problem of investigation is guided in theoretical terms by critiques of contemporary architecture by, among others, Ignasí de Solà-Morales when he says that architecture is conceived of as a cult of the object itself (Solà Morales, 2002) and Manuel de Solà-Morales when he criticizes urban representation and claims that architecture can not be reduced to a homogenous spot in a colorful puzzle (Solà Morales, 1981b).. This tension suggested years ago is still relevant today and guides our work.

The question that is generated by the problem of investigation is: how to represent the morphology of the city in an integrated and synoptic way? Such notion of integrality requires the coexistence of three concepts: architecture, city and landscape; and that the synoptic vision is the vehicle which allows for a simultaneous visualization of the whole that unites them and the parts or layers which specify it. Within each concept lies a specific form of knowledge and a cartographic representation.

In this framework, the first hypothesis that the investigation has formulized, problematized and worked, through the restitution and construction of a map of the city of Santiago in 1910, is that the architecture, city and landscape milestones coexist coherently. We were interested in creating a graphic document that allows for the recognition of the typological nature of the city's buildings and public spaces, and its grid and the block system nature, and at the same time that each part remains situated and identified in the city and in the territory as a whole. In this way, an attempt has been made to recover the possibility of visualizing and understanding the city in a complete way. In Santiago's case, this practice has been lost since the Republic's centennial due to the increasing extension and complexity that the city acquired along its path to metropolis, related to an urban representation of the abstract and schematic type.

A second, complementary hypothesis is that due to the framework of the modern paradigm of scientific knowledge, which every day requires better abstraction to record the observation of milestones, a simultaneously physiognomic and technical visualization of the whole and its parts was abandoned.

For this reason, the graphic representation mediums of the city of Santiago in the 20th century that reflected its modern development –given its size in terms of surface area and population(8)– were accompanied by increasing specification of its different parts: networks, systems and subsystems, etc. At the same time, an increasing inability to represent it in an integrated way is observed.

Additionally, the technical representation of the road network infrastructure and the service networks introduced an analytical and analog breakdown of these components of the street, dividing the object of study up into a variety of maps or street plans (Larrain, 1909). These two investigational hypotheses define and specify, in a theoretical way, the qualities of the plan whose goal is the coexistence of architectural, city and landscape milestones in one single document.

In this search(9), it has been key to review existing references and paradigmatic maps that, over the course of urban cartography history, have been examples of an articulated and coherent relationship among the elements of architecture, city and landscape. With this in mind, we carefully studied the map of the city of Imola created by Leonardo da Vinci in 1502 (Baratta, 1941); that of Rome created by Giambattista Nolli in 1748 (Borsi, 1993 and Ceen, 1991) and the 1874 map of Madrid (aa.vv., 1979), by the Instituto Geográfico y Estadístico (Geographic and Statistical Institute) of Madrid. These three renowned maps from a variety of periods of western culture, have served as references to observe and discuss the criterion under which the main product of this investigation has been undertaken.

In this sense, in the national realm, the maps of Mostardi-Fioretti of 1864 and Ansart of 1875 (Martínez, 2007) are especially exceptional. The first paradox that the investigation happened upon was that towards the end of the nineteenth century, a change takes place in the way the city of Santiago, Chile is represented in cartographic documents. In fact, after a series of maps that represent the urban organization in an integrated and synoptic way (Martínez, 2007), this tendency stops at the beginning of the 20th century and subsequent maps only obtain it in superficial and schematic ways.

Urban registers of Santiago, Chile –from the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century– were exceptionally precise, exhaustive and focused. One example is that of Alejandro Bertrand who brought together information in a conscious and explicit way, transmitting by way of street surveys a vision of the city that was comprehensive and at the same time precise. A second paradox lies in the fact that despite this, and for reasons other than physical loss, this particular form of knowledge and representation ended.

The problem of investigation, the questions and the hypotheses previously mentioned and, in particular, these two paradoxes make sense of and justify the construction of a map of Santiago in 1910 at a scale of 1: 5,000. In the first place, it brings together –in one single document– detailed information as never before available. And secondly, this cartographic construction poignantly reveals and represents Santiago's state of transition from pre-modern to modern city.

The main product of this investigation is a map that attempts to represent the coherent coexistence of the elements of architecture, city and landscape on a scale that allows for this. Representation of each unit is important, but the breakdown of the urban form in architecture, city and landscape has the goal of focusing our attention to better understand the complete fabric.

Independent of any definition, we have selected these three categories to represent urban organization, once again coinciding with Schlögel, who says: "A map which represents everything doesn't represent anything and is senseless. It produces either chaos or confusion. Maps only manage to accomplish something by enhancing one thing and getting rid of everything else" (Schlögel, 2003).

The distinction among the architecture, city and landscape milestones is not as important as the reflection that each of these categories, or layers of representation, allows for the understanding of the material of the space. Most certainly, one is interested in representing the "urban material", as Solà-Morales says.

This is all the more true in the production of a retrospective map, of a city one hundred years ago, whose transience depends upon more than its background and historic sources, than the precise surveys that show the concrete nature of its streets, avenues, private homes, buildings and public spaces. In the strictest sense, it is the creation of a map with inverted meaning; not meant to abstract or simplify the phenomenon of the present reality, nor to move in close to understand the details of the phenomenon of an absent reality.

Because of this, trying to transcribe the complex and rich reality of this organization requires a process that reproduces in a very exact way the information obtained, articulates the primary sources, their assembly, the different ways of transcribing and the assembly of the whole to end up with the succinct description provided by the main map and its three readings.

Because of this, trying to transcribe the complex and rich reality of this organization requires a process that reproduces in a very exact way the information obtained, articulates the primary sources, their assembly, the different ways of transcribing and the assembly of the whole to end up with the succinct description provided by the main map and its three readings (Pérez, 2004).

In the creation of the map, the following stages were defined: one of standardization, which consisted of the digitalization and vectorization of the primary sources; the construction, which considered the assembly of the primary sources once standardized; assembly of the various layers of information generated: architecture, city and landscape; and, finally, the readings. At the end, a stage of verification and confirmation regarding the work was added.

With regards to the primary sources, these consist mainly of those found in the 1910 Archivo Municipal del Catastro de Manzanas (Municipal Archive of the Block Register) – one thousand four hundred plates that represent the plan of each block, scale 1: 500. Complementarily, the plans of 343 architectural cases (scales from 1: 50 to 1: 100) were compiled whose main source was the archives of the company Aguas Andinas(10). Finally, add the plans, of a variety of scales, plus historic photographs of 56 landscape operations(11). Another primary source is the geographic charts made between 1903 and 1915 by the institution now known as the Instituto Geográfico Militar (Military Geography Institute). These are framed in the context of a survey at the national level, in charts on the scale 1: 25,000(12). The restitution of the railway route and its associated facilities was created based upon the Archivo Histórico de las Empresas de Ferrocarriles del Estado (EFE) (Historic Archive of the State Railroad Companies), the Museo Ferroviario (Railway Museum), the Instituto Ferroviario (Railway Institute) and the Archivo de la Administración Nacional (National Administration Archive).

In this context, the transcriptions worked as a series of stages that began with the compilation of information, then the processing of this information and finally the creation of the product (González, 1988). Regarding this, three pivotal moments in history became clear. The first was when the phenomenon was transcribed to its planimetric representation via a detailed survey (plate created around 1910). The second was in 2008 when the information on the plate was transcribed into digital form. The third occurred presently with the transcription and adaptation of this information to the actual printed map, scale 1: 5,000. This transcription process implied the adaptation of the information on several scales that were found in the original documents or primary sources (none of the scale 1: 5,000), in hopes of achieving their correct visibility and balance in the map as a whole. The assembly of the map's components measures the success of this stage.

In fact, this assembly operation consisted mainly of fitting the architectural cases into the interiors of the blocks, and the fit of the landscape cases and the blocks in the grid, and, finally, this whole had, at the same time, its final fit into the rural context representation. In this construction process and as a way of verifying the degree of readability of its parts, planimetric tests were carried out for the blocks, the architectural cases and the landscape cases, each individually.

Next, a second phase consisted of the assembly process that was conceived from a notion of layers and strata. The first is the topographic map geocen 2002. The second is the map made up of the municipality of Santiago and its surroundings in 2008, which was the basis for inserting the one thousand four hundred blocks in the catalogue of Santiago in 1910. Upon this base, the adapted transcription of the rural surroundings –scale 1: 25,000– from the igm map was mounted. Later on, the layers that include the architectural and landscape cases and the railroad lines were added.

So it follows that the structural understanding of the city is a map of Santiago in 1910 where architecture, city and landscape exist on a scale of 1: 5,000 and a format of 210 x 255 cm. This map, being synoptic, represents the phenomenon of the physical city in an integrated fashion.

This map is the confirmation of a methodological hypothesis that implies the selection of a scale of 1: 5,000 and a printed medium that allows the city to be represented in its entirety including the one thousand four hundred blocks of the 1910 map; the 343 plans of public and institutional buildings; and the 56 landscape cases, including the rural surroundings. Included in this map is the railroad system of the time with its routes and buildings. The maps that analyze and synthesize the architecture, city and landscape individually are simultaneous validations of its correct construction and representation.

Such is the map of Santiago in 1910. Architecture, the first reading, on a scale of 1: 5,000, consists of 343 public and institutional building plans inserted into the street grid. The buildings' walls, floors and spaces have been emphasized. From this map, one can see the continuous or discontinuous relationship between the interiors and exteriors of the buildings, defining the limits between the public and the private. The map also allows one to relay the building typologies and their locations on the block and in the different areas of the city.

The second level corresponds to the elements and the thousand four hundred blocks that make up the city, for which the land subdivision and urban grid, including roads and sidewalks, have been emphasized. This map also represents the rural surroundings by way of a network of streets and alleys, which allow one to understand the immediate surroundings at the border of the city in addition to the land and internal subdivision of the agricultural lots. This map allows one to relate the continuity of the roads between the city and the surrounding land, the main avenues and urban society's access to the landscape.

The third level records the landscape and consists of 56 cases that include squares, plazas, pedestrian ways and parks situated amongst the streets and their greenery. Along with these spaces, geographical landmarks are shown immersed in their urban context. These open spaces within the city complement the diversity of rural spaces such as ancestral homes and cultivated lands, like orchards, vineyards, vegetable gardens and settlements. This map allows one to see the connection among open spaces in the city and confirm the existence of a system of leisure and recreation. (Rosas, Strabucchi, Hidago and Cordano, 2010).

Finally, the synthesis map is the whole city, which can be understood, on the one hand, as the analytical breakdown of instructive layers like the superimposition of the three-part, explanatory maps of the urban material.

The reality is always richer and more complex than our representations of it, created and synthesized in a map.

Still, the map as a product has value for what it represents, in other words, to the degree and way in which it reveals the pre-modern state of the city of Santiago. This is the most precise planimetric image ever created, one that confirms the transition of the city from pre-urban to urban. This precision is the hypothesis of the FONDECYT Nº 1110684 "Santiago 1890: la calle como soporte y tránsito hacia la modernidad. Transcripción y montaje planimétrico del catastro de calles de Alejandro Bertrand"(13). (Santiago 1890: The Street as a Support and Byway Towards Modernity. Transcription and Planimetric Mounting of Alejandro Bertrand's Street Registry.) In disciplinary terms, part of this cartographic document's value stems from its contribution to future urban studies of Santiago as a descriptive methodology applicable to other urban realities and the possibility of multiple and new view points.

It seems all the more relevant to us that the cartographic image of Santiago in 1910 and readings of the attributes of its architecture, city and landscape, in particular, were attempts to represent the construction and occupation of the space during a time in which the city of Santiago was undergoing a significant change, the consequence of a series of events already underway.

The majority of the morphological and typological configurations are derived from a group of observations of Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna's transformation plan and Ernesto Ansart's 1875 map, subsequently supplemented with Alejandro Bertrand's map and the survey of streets and avenues conducted in 1890, as well as the drinking water canalization project and sewage system created in 1905 by the company Batignolles et Fould (Larrain, 1909).

These modernizing practices contribute to defining the stable city image that is longed for and, on the other hand, confirm a point of inflection in the cartographic history of the city and the canvas upon which the city of Santiago in 1910 is constructed and its future development (Rosas, Vicuña, Farías, 2011).

The urban structure is expressed in the clarity with which the railway system is defined, as a majority of the perimeter, the limit between urban areas and rural lands. For its part, the chosen scale of 1: 5,000 allows for a clear, simultaneous read of the architecture, city and landscape milestones(14). It has a fixed, manageable size from which to appreciate the whole. In the framing defined for the map, the city and the country are well defined as well as the arrangement of the public and private buildings that are mostly homes and have small land subdivisions; the decisive urban elements of lot allocation and the street grid; and other areas which make up the city.

In this way, the city as-is combines with the city as-represented, balancing an appreciation for detail with the impression of the whole. In synthesis, construction of the final product expresses the way in which it was created.


1.     This article is intimately related to the attachment that accompanies this magazine and includes the map of Santiago in 1910, scale 1: 5,000, the main product of this investigation.

2.     The influences of the Laboratorio de Urbanismo de Barcelona as an institution, a national medium and Manuel de Solà-Morales's role as architect, both in his theoretical focus and his methodology, are noteworthy.
A list of papers works derived from this position are included in the present bibliography.

3.     FONDECYT project Nº 1085253, previously cited.

4.     The team at Municipality of Santiago's Works Department: Miguel Saavedra, Gustavo Carrasco, Ignacio Corvalán and Claudio Contreras.

5.     Assistants included Francisca Carter, Carmen Verdugo, Carlos Silva and Felipe Lanuza; and thesis students Christian Saavedra, María José Besoain and Gabriel Allende.

6.     Santiago map. Imprenta y Litografía América, 1910 (Martínez, 2007).

7.     Regarding this matter several papers have been produced by students at Universidad Católica School of Architecture: Silva, Carlos. "Informe Metodología de Dibujo Año 3", March 2011; Lanuza, Felipe. "Restitución planimétrica. Trazados e infraestructuras ferroviarias de Santiago 1910", March 2011; Carter, Francisca y Carmen Verdugo. "Construcción del Plano de 'Santiago de 1910'. Metodología y estado de avance, capas ciudad y arquitectura", March 2010; Saavedra, Christian. "Construcción plano de Santiago 1910. Método y avance capa paisaje: espacio público y ruralidad", March 2010; Saavedra, Christian y Lanuza, Felipe. "Los planos de rectificación de la calles de Santiago, 1890 de Alejandro Bertrand", March 2010.

8.     In 1900 Santiago covered a surface of 5,085 hectares and had 256,000 inhabitants (Martínez, 2007).

9.     Whenever possible, we have worked with facsimile-sized maps, in order that their readings be as similar as possible to that of the originals. This recognizes the importance of careful treatment of the study's sources. We have attempted to make clear their importance to this analysis. Because of this, an informational insert has been included that aims to be as exhaustive as possible and reveal the details and circumstances of the creation of each document.

10.     This material was compiled by the architect and co-investigator of this project, Italo Cordano, over the course of 20 years.

11.     Another main source of the planimetry referred to were photographs. Photographic archives were created for each case. Co-investigator German Hidalgo was in charge of this task which gave birth to the book Vistas panorámicas de Santiago 1790-1910. Su desarrollo urbano bajo la mirada de dibujantes, pintores y fotógrafos.

12.     The charts which capture the geographic framework of Santiago in 1910 are 4: Northern Santiago from the northeast; Southern Santiago from the southeast; Renca from the northwest; and Maipú from the southwest.

13.     This project was awarded as the second stage of the Project FONDECYT Nº 1085253 "Santiago 1910: Construcción planimétrica de la ciudad premoderna. Transcripciones entre el fenómeno de la ciudad física dada y la ciudad representada. 2008-2011" to be executed between 2011 and 2014.

14.     A precise and recognizable scale has been opted for, conventionally used by members of this discipline. A fine adjustment according to other criteria could cause proportional reductions, which are not as clear and specific. While it is true that they could approach an optimal reading of the representation, they could also distort the map as an observation tool, comparable and mutable in relation to other representations.


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