Infoterra launches interactive 3D city mapping service - a technological first

February 03, 2010 -- Today sees the launch of Skape, a new 3D city mapping service designed for architects, planners, local authorities and surveyors. Created and developed by Infoterra, a leading provider of geographic information products and services, Skape enables users to manipulate urban landscapes online by combining high resolution 3D textured city models with 2D mapping and terrain data - a technological first.

Through Skape, users can access major UK cities, enabling urban planners to rapidly develop highly detailed architectural models and save on both time and costs. With Skape, new buildings can be imported into a city and viewed in context with their surroundings, whilst existing buildings can be instantly removed and replaced. The high level of accuracy means that varying building textures, street furniture, light and sun shadowing at different times of the day, and unlimited vantage points can be observed from anywhere in this online environment.

Skape launches with in-depth 3D coverage of major UK cities including London (centre), Birmingham, Leicester, Nottingham, Southampton, Brighton, Bournemouth, Glasgow, Manchester and Newcastle. By the end of 2010 Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield, Cardiff, Edinburgh and additional London coverage will be added to Skape's city coverage.

Skape Facts:

* 12 - the number of UK cities mapped so far

* 4 - the number of planes in the Infoterra fleet

* 52 - the number of experts on the Skape testing panel

* 11 - the number of industries that could use Skape

* 14 - the number of applications for Skape

* 52,660 - the number of buildings mapped in total

* 23,947 - the number of buildings mapped in London

* 3,750 - the number of hours it took to map the centre of London

* 960 - the number of hours it took to map Birmingham

Jamie Ritchie, responsible for the launch of Skape, explains: "In today's environment architects and planners are so dependent on modelling and 3D modelling. Their clients are demanding high quality, 3D visuals to bring concepts to life and to help them with their tendering and commissioning decisions. With Skape, highly realistic, complex modelling can now be done quickly and cost-effectively."

"Skape has been developed in conjunction with our user base, so we've called on an independent, expert panel of architects for feedback during the development process."

"During the feedback and development process, the majority of users viewed Skape as a significant improvement over current technology, showing that the market has been waiting for a service like Skape."

"The feedback has been extremely useful, and has meant that the service has been developed with our customer base constantly in mind. Skape will continually develop as we capture more and more data, and as our customers' needs evolve."

Skape has already been used by Bournemouth Borough Council's planning department to scope out a potential new regeneration project, allowing stakeholders to see a far more realistic visual concept than would have been possible previously, in the form of a flythrough of Bournemouth centre and 16 development sites.

"I am convinced Skape has a number of uses that will assist us in promoting the Town Centre Master Vision (TCMV) initiative and the Council's wider aspirations for the Town." - Martin Tiffin, TCMV Programme Leader, Bournemouth Borough Council.

For more information on Skape visit or for a free introductory credit, please call 0845 117 3030

For further information, to receive high resolution images, or to arrange a demonstration of Skape, please contact:

Cheryl Billson, Infoterra PR, + 44 (0)7791 720460
Email Contact

About Infoterra Ltd
Infoterra Ltd is a leading provider of geographic information products and services. Its portfolio of geographic information solutions includes airborne and satellite data acquisition, geo-information creation, database management and outsourced hosting. Infoterra provides geospatial knowledge to companies worldwide to help them make informed decisions. The company has major customers in government, defence, insurance, utilities, engineering and oil, gas & mineral exploration.

Infoterra Ltd. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Astrium, Europe's leading space systems and services specialist. Infoterra Ltd, which incorporates Imass Ltd, is part of the Spot Infoterra, the Earth Observation Division of Astrium Services.

Panel testimonials:
Cliff Green, Architect, Building Design Partnership

"This product looks great. I can see it easily fitting in with our existing 3D workflow re building height studies, planning guidance and master planning. Can't wait!" Andrew Sheldon, Managing Consultant, Urban Initiatives Ltd

"Up to this point we're still constructing detailed 3D models by ourselves extracting data from Google Earth and aerial imagery combined with 2D OS Maps. I truly believe Skape is a tool that we can make daily use of." Firas Hnoosh ARB LEED AP, Associate, Skidmore Owings & Merrill Inc.

"I feel Skape's 3D building models and online functionality will add great value to what we can offer to our clients. It will save us time and effort in creating and visualising our designs and will provide Local Planners with a far clearer picture of how our designs will look in real world 3D" - Brian Evans, Project Technology Analyst - Applications, Building Design Partnership.

"The quality of the modelling appears to be excellent" Ben Leslie, Senior Spatial Intelligence Technician, Homes and Communities Agency

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