I saw a couple of people asking during the opening segment last night about the icons on the map of the the cordoned off crime scene area in Boston’s Back Bay. The map is from the City of Boston’s press release, which they’ve since updated with a better version (seen above).
I did spend a while trying to figure out what the icons were on the first map and couldn’t find the source. The reason is that the City of Boston site has an elaborate maps section that allows you to choose a base map and then layer data on top of it. The mystery icons were remnants of whatever layer was on there when they took the picture of the map.
I will add, however, that if, like me, you appreciate the ability of maps to provide a sense of place to news events, the Google Street View stroll down the stretch where the marathon explosions took place is really amazing.
It turns out the finish line is always there. The Google view shows “113th Boston Marathon,” which was 2009’s race.
And most eerie of all, the site of the second blast is accessible by coincidence through one of those storefront sidewalk features. You can literally (virtually) stand at the spot next to the green box that is being so closely scrutinized in the WHDH images.