INFORMATION BULLETIN                                                                                        Number 58
HISTORICAL LAND                                                 The website is divided into five sections with sub-
                                                                categories as follows:
DEVELOPMENT WEBSITE                                             • Historical Land Use/ Land Transformations
The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH)                   o Land Transformations
awards grants to local cultural organizations and                           Transportation
institutions, in order to support cultural efforts throughout               Development Patterns
Louisiana. The Baton Rouge City - Parish Planning                  o Land Use Categories
Commission, was awarded an LEH grant in the amount of                       Historic Land Use Categories
$19,460 in July 2004. This grant was utilized to conduct                    Horizon Plan Land Use
research and create a Geographic Information System (GIS)       • Historical Census Records
website related to the historical land development of East      • About the Scholars
Baton Rouge Parish.                                             • Online Visitors Survey
                                                                • Other Links
The primary focus of this website is to display the history
of land use development in Baton Rouge. Therefore, an
examination was conducted of the various physical forms
of the city, and how those forms evolved under political,
economic, and social influences prior to 1941. It is best
described as an inventory of existing land by its specific
use. This data does not exist in isolation. However, the
goal of this website is to provide historical land use data
accompanied by its social, economic, archaeological,
architectural, and demographic influences. The necessary
research was conducted by the Planning Commission Staff
and the LSU History and Geography Departments.
Below: The Pentagon Barracks were a part of the LSU
campus beginning in 1884. Photograph courtesy of the
Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation, and Tour-
ism image database.
                                                                Above: The state completed construction of the Huey
                                                                Long Bridge in 1940. It combined an automobile and
                                                                railroad bridge, reducing the need for ferry service
                                                                across the river.
                                                                This section describes how Baton Rouge began to
                                                                develop in its early stages, due to its natural location
                                                                along the Mississippi River. This river has been a major
                                                                transportation corridor for Baton Rouge and was a factor
                                                                in developing commercial activity within the city. Also
                                                                discussed, is the evolution of transportation modes, roads,
                                                                and highways, and how they affected land development
                                                                throughout the parish.
                                                              ABOUT THE SCHOLARS
                                                              A biography of each individual involved in the
                                                              development of the website is provided in this section.
                                                              Also included are each of their roles/tasks and expertise/
                                                              qualifications. These scholars were called upon to write
                                                              descriptive narratives, provide analysis of land use maps
                                                              and aerial photographs, and review contents included in the
                                                              website, according to LEH criteria.

                                                              ONLINE VISITORS SURVEY
                                                              A concise survey is included in this section of the website
                                                              for viewers to answer. This survey allows each individual
                                                              to express their opinion about the website’s ease of
Above: Built in 1926, the LSU campus buildings shared         navigation, educational effects, and overall rating. This
red-tile roofs and occupied most of the area to the right     information will help the Planning Commission evaluate
of the open parade ground. Photograph courtesy of             and improve the effectiveness of the website.
the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation, and
Tourism image database.                                       The Historical Land Development website was developed
                                                              to provide a context for assessing environmental
                                                              conditions, interpreting current trends, and making more
This section of the website features an interactive parish
                                                              informed policy and management decisions for the future.
map, which displays historic sites such as buildings,
                                                              It also provides data for an online humanities encyclopedia
museums, and parks. Also included is a narrative informing
                                                              for East Baton Rouge Parish.
viewers of the parish’s history and historical sites on the
map. Finally, both the past and present of East Baton
Rouge are discussed by individual areas and topics. These     Below: Shotgun houses are common in the South Ba-
areas and topics include: Downtown; Spanish Town;             ton Rouge neighborhood.
Beauregard Town; Early Suburbs; Auto Suburbs; Drainage;
Industry; Parks; Universities; and Commerce.

In this section, the website provides land use maps for
1946, 1956, 1965, 1976, and 1986-1988. Along with
each map, there is a summarized explanation about land
use changes, major subdivision construction, commercial
corridor development, and change in density for the
residential districts.

Here, viewers of the website can view the Horizon-Ten
Year Update Report. This report presents an overview of
the comprehensive plan (Horizon Plan) during its second
five years and accomplishments to date. Also, projects to
be completed for the next five years are mentioned. The
Planning Commission is responsible for coordination
                                                                             For more information contact:
of the Horizon Plan, in concurrence with local and state
government and private non-profit organizations, which                      City-Parish Planning Commission
function as lead agencies to implement the plan.                            1755 Florida Street, Third Floor
                                                                                     P.O. Box 1471
HISTORICAL CENSUS RECORDS                                                       Baton Rouge, LA 70821
This section shows how human activities and changes in               Telephone: (225) 389-3144 Fax: (225) 389-5342
land use are related, based on population density by census                  Office Hours: 8a.m.-5p.m. M-F
tracts and census blocks. Census figures from 1990 and                         email: planning@brgov.com
2000 illustrate relocation from the City of Baton Rouge to          web page: http://www.brgov.com/dept/planning/
outlying suburbs of East Baton Rouge Parish.
                                                                                                              March 2010

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