This post was originally published on Gather.com, and is reproduced here (primarily to try to keep my writing in one spot).
The other day I shared a post about a propane explosion about two miles south of me: one that most people across the continent have at least heard echoes of, in the news. I’ve been staying on top of most of the news in this regard, interested in what they are going to do about zoning in Toronto. I discovered the following picture of the blast, which easily identifies the houses across the street that were in danger of being damaged. But being a geographer, I figured I would like to see what it looked like before the blast. So I looked it up on google maps. It’s a bit flipped around, but it’s not hard to see that this is the same place.
Unfortunately, since this post was first published, Google has updated their imagery and now all you can see is an empty lot where the propane plant used to be. But you can still get a sense of the neighbourhood, and how close residential houses were situated next to the plant itself. So we can see what a narrow scrape those people had who lived across the street.
But since I am re-posting this after almost five years, I was able to find a few more pictures as well. Click on any of them at right to go to the original source for the photo.
(And note to friends who wonder what “GIS” is, my profession: this is the kind of thing I do! Right down to being able to compensate for changing data and understand not only how they look now, but how the looked in the past.)