KOCHI: The Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) has completed the first phase of geotagging its heritage and historic sites, especially in Fort Kochi and Mattancherry. GCDA chairman Chandran Pillai said that the first phase of the project, which identifies places, buildings, roads, and objects of historical heritage importance in Kochi, is complete. It was implemented with the help of Geographical Information System (GIS).
GCDA, along with the Cochin Heritage Zone Conservation Society, has identified over 150 heritage sites and geotagged them. GIS-based geotagging is the process of appending geographic coordinates to various media, such as a photo or videos. Geotagging provides users with a wide variety of location-specific information on the content of a given picture.
Author and illustrator Bony Thomas has been appointed by the GCDA to spearhead the project.“Around 150 heritage sites have been marked in Fort Kochi and Mattancherry as part of this project. This project was started in August last year,” said an official release from GCDA.
“The second phase of the project is to write down the historical heritage significance of the places marked by geotagging, and the work has already started,” the release said. “Once it is complete, the public and tourists can avail information about the heritage sites through Web GIS that will be made available at GCDA’s website, which is under renovation,” said an official of GCDA.
Historians believe Kochi was founded as a port following the flood and natural disaster in Periyar in 1341. Fort Kochi-Mattancherry area, which was known as the Kochi port area, was an epicentre of trade, especially for Arabs, Chinese and Jews.
From the beginning of the 16th century until Indian independence, first, the Portuguese, then the Dutch, and then the British came to Kochi, ruled, and lived in a setting that resembled their native culture. Individuals and communities from different parts of India too made Kochi their home. The sites earmarked for the project reflect this history. Feedback of the Historical Research Council and the Department of Archeology will also be sought before the project’s published.