Trials of an Event Law-aison

The trials of a second-year law student at the University of Alberta.

Giant Maps

Jonathan Ip - Monday, January 24, 2011

I hope everybody had a wonderful holiday season and are ready for a fun and energetic 2011! We were welcomed back to school with a barrage of marked midterms. I think most people are glad the exams were "failsafe" and would like another shot at them in April. It was definitely a learning curve to learn how to write these exams, and the profs have very high and sometimes mysterious expectations on how to do well.

I was walking on campus today and came across this huge (~12 ft high) map of Alberta in some random building.  It reminds me of those Gigapixel pictures where you can zoom in on a cityscape and identify people on the streets. What this map also reminds me of is property law. Grid systems created by government surveyors are used in Canada to help describe the boundaries of parcels of land. Most of Western Canada uses the same system, so Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and large parts of BC can be visualized as one large grid of squares. There are, of course, other types of plans specific to smaller areas, and where these plans are inadequate, boundaries can be defined relative to bodies of water or other structures. As you can imagine, sometimes there may be ambiguities in the legal description or boundary markers can shift, which might give rise to problems between neighbours.


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