Maxime Colomb
Geographer Engineer
en français in english

Study of the urban locating : Do you do you do you know Sainté?



For my final graduation project, I have conducted a study about urban locating. Two fundamental concepts were analyzed: the creation and use of Landmarks, and the idea of neighborhoods. This research topic was funded by IMU , in parallel with a PhD research about points of interest (POI). I developed a website to collect this information. With an advanced mapping interface, this tool provides all the information on how people orientate themselves in the city. The site is still accessible here.

The study is applied to Saint Etienne. The city is of average size. Since I am from there, I know this city well. This is not necessarily a prerequisite to the installation of such a test, but it made the first construction easier. This tool can easily be re-applied to other French or European cities.

The website displays three main pages, each one illustrating a concept within the study: neighborhoods, landmarks and points of interest

After submitting a form to the user, the site produces a personalized map which points out the information answered by the user.

Once the site was built and completed by Saint Etienne’s population, I had spatial information directly importable on a GIS at my fingertips. I proceeded to calculation on the data, which are explained in my mémoire (only in French).

Directional ellipses of Saint Etienne

Directional ellipses representing the main direction of the Saint Etienne districts





zone d'influence des points de repères de Saint Etienne Thiessen polygons representing the influence of the main Saint Etienne landmarks

This project was taken over by a team of students from the same Masters I had done. A new advertising campaign will be launched to promote the website. It will be improved from the original version I had edited, so as to be more instinctive.
The test may be set up in Lyon. The application of this test on a European metropolis size would greatly benefit the project.