EVOLVING TECHNIQUES OF DOCUMENTATION OF A WORLD HERITAGE SITE IN LAHORE
Keywords: 3D - laser scanning, EDM documentation, world heritage site, cultural heritage, photo rectification, conservation, urban heritage, Lahore Fort.
Abstract. Lahore is an ancient, culturally rich city amidst which are embedded two world heritage sites. The state of historic preservation in the country is impoverished with a dearth of training and poor documentation skills, thus these monuments are decaying and in dire need of attention. The Aga Khan Cultural Service - Pakistan is one of the first working in heritage conservation in the country. AKCSP is currently subjecting the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Mughal era Lahore Fort to an intensive and multi-faceted architectural documentation process. This is presented here as a case study to chart the evolution of documentation techniques and enunciate the spectrum of challenges faced in the documentation of an intricate Mughal heritage site for conservation in the Pakistani context.
3D - laser scanning is used for the purpose of heritage conservation for the first time, and since has been utilised on heritage buildings and urban fabric in ongoing projects. These include Lahore Fort, Walled city of Lahore as well as the Baltit Fort, a project restored in the past, assisting in the maintenance of conserved buildings. The documentation team is currently discovering the full potential of this technology especially its use in heritage conservation simultaneously overcoming challenges faced. Moreover negotiating solutions to auto-generate 2D architectural drawings from the 3D pointcloud output. The historic architecture is juxtaposed with contemporary technology in a region where such a combination is rarely found. The goal is to continually develop the documentation methodologies whilst investigating other technologies in the future.