South Pole Area Management Plans and Maps

tenting tonight
Above, one of the NGO camp sites, with AST/RO and Building 61 in
the background; photo from the 2010 management report, see below

Note: this page revised 6 July 2011, the information should be current.

Why all of these documents and maps? They were first presented by the United States at the ATCM XXVIII--the 28th Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) in Stockholm in June 2005--along with a first draft of the management plan for this Antarctic Specially Managed Area (ASMA). Quoting from the 2009-10 Pole ASMA management report [note: most of the links on this page are to MS Word or PDF documents] presented at the 2010 Antarctic Treaty meeting in Uruguay, "Pursuant to a 1982 Presidential Memorandum, the National Science Foundation (NSF) is responsible for managing the United States national program in Antarctica. The NSF policy on private expeditions to Antarctica states, "The U.S. Government is not able to offer support or other service to private expeditions, U.S. or foreign, in Antarctica." The official NSF policy on private expeditions is stated here.

The management plan was revised in response to comments, and it was resubmitted at ATCM XXX in New Delhi in April/May 2007, where it was approved. The management plan itself is scheduled to be revised in 2012, but the detailed guidelines and some of the maps have been revised several times--to reflect the changing real estate environment at Pole, to provide safer and more convenient non-governemental organization (NGO) traverse routes and camping sites, and to address the fact that a significantly larger crowd of NGO visitors is expected in the 2011-12 season.

[All of the documents linked from this page (and many more)are available on the Antarctic Treaty system (ATS) web site under the designated meeting, but from that link you must navigate to the various meetings, reports, and documents, since the site uses javascript and does not remember links].

First, the documents:

The management plan basically outlines the NGO access restrictions in various areas...restrictions on uses of chemicals and melting of snow...access to unsafe areas...and similar procedural guidelines. The various management reports describe how things went...problems encountered...trends and statistics on NGO visitors...and changes/improvements to be made for the following season. And the visitor guidelines provide specific detail as to aircraft and surface access routes, access restrictions, communications and emergency guidelines.


First, Map 1, the original from 2007--a small-scale overview, about a 175 km radius around the station:
way out
Here's the full size JPG copy (500 kb) and the PDF (561 kb).


Zoom in a bit to a 20 km radius (Map 2, revised in 2010):
you are entering the polie sector
(full size JPG (1.2 mb) and PDF (1.2 mb). Here is the original 2007 map (PDF 515 kb).


Now move in closer to a 5 km radius (Map 3, revised in 2011):
this way to where the dome used to be
(full size JPG (1 mb) and PDF (578 kb) and the original 2007 map (PDF 906 kb).


And the close-in site plan (Map 4, revised in 2011):
runway in sight
(full size JPG (962 kb) and PDF (1 mb) and the original 2007 map (PDF 680 kb).


Continue on for the detailed site plan and the elevated station layout...

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