I just made some significant changes to URL structure on my main site. Here's the basic concept.
Old URL example: domain/1/CategoryName/2/SubcategoryName
New URL example: domain/CategoryName/SubcategoryName
Suffice to say the old URLs were cumbersome and unnecessarily deep. The new ones are more "hackable" and "readable" as well as provide some other site structuring features not pertinent to this question.
Anyway, my old site map file submitted to SE's contains about 100,000 of these old-style URLs. All old URL's are properly 301 redirected to the new version. So, the question is whether to submit a new site map or just delete the old one.
This site involves millions of pages so it could take awhile for the SE's to pick up this volume of change. I'm worried that if I submit a new sitemap, the new URLs will be indexed in short order while the old urls are still in the index (leading to duplicate content penalties in the short run). My gut feeling is to simply remove the old sitemaps and wait for Google to find and apply the redirects via it's natural crawling process. I'm also thinking that by allowing discovery solely through the crawling process, that I won't get into a situation where I have to manually remove pages from the index to solve potential duplicate content issues.
Any thoughts or suggestions would be much appreciated as always.