3D-GIS for Urban Planning

The 3D-GIS in the Cloud main purpose is to evaluate the use-efficiency of both existing and planned spatial space. The application is an information-based decision making tool used when designing regional or neighborhood plans, or when considering regulatory and incentive strategies.


The application creates a detailed Smart 3D City model of both above and below ground structures and features. The model includes maps and imagery that are placed on their exact spatial location based on their position and elevation information.

Decision makers can visualize different scenarios when evaluating complicated urban plans. For example, the application provides the ability to simulate different building plans in order to evaluate a certain block adequate residents’ capacity. The results can even be compared with the allowable capacity according to existing or future permits.


“Equipped with visualization and analysis capabilities, 3D-GIS in the Cloud is considered a powerful tool use to solve the various issues modern cities are confronting”

GIS information has been reformed to meet the 3D model display needs and includes 3D spatial lots, parcels and sub parcels while preserving accurate three-dimensional displacement distances, boundary buffers, expropriations, sub parcel expropriations, etc.

The application provides extensive 3D query and analysis tools that can simulate different Urban/City/Town planning scenarios to assess the implications of any structure including skyline changes, its shadow affects over neighboring structures, area-of-sight, line-of-sight, or even viewshed assessment from and to surrounding buildings.

The 3D model can include SketchUp models of structures and features and also symbolic features such as cars, road signs and traffic lights, people, trees, etc. to liven up the model and emphasize its realism.

Project committees have already recognized the abilities of 3D visualization and its advantages as a powerful tool to reach a consensus.

Advantages of 3D-GIS in Urban Planning

  • Providing the ability to easily understand complex urban planning regulation as 3D visualization
  • Offers comparison capabilities between existing and planned buildings to a specific area regulation
  • Create realistic simulations of proposed urban development plans and test-case different scenarios
  • Support local governments in achieving planning consents with communities and industries
  • Ability to visualize and analyze the volumetric shadow created by planned structures in consideration with the time of day
  • Thorough analysis of data and impacts not achievable in a 2D environment
  • Easily visualize how proposed urban development plans change the city skyline and evaluate its impacts
  • Line-of-sight and area-of-sight evaluation capabilities from various observation points positioned at different locations and heights
  • Create realistic 3D flythrough animations of any scenario such as touring within a proposed project or to evaluate situational impacts