Recommendation 29 of the 2018 State Infrastructure Strategy called for the development of a business case for an upgrade of the state’s Foundation Spatial Data Framework (FSDF) from a two-dimensional map to a four-dimensional model (3D + time). That is a full three-dimensional model of the state’s physical environment, capable of recording past conditions and visualising future scenarios. Four-dimensional models of this nature are increasingly referred to as Digital Twins.
To develop the inputs necessary to build the business case, a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) has been developed by Spatial Services. Given the level of infrastructure investment, as well as economic and social significance, the area chosen for the Digital Twin MVP is the eight Local Government Areas comprising the Western Parkland City and Greater Parramatta and the Olympic Peninsula.
The NSW Spatial Digital Twin is upgrading the existing two-dimensional creating a digital real-world model of our cities and communities which will facilitate better planning, design and modelling for NSW’s future needs.
In addition to upgrading the actual FSDF content, a new four-dimensional visualisation platform (Digital Twin Visualisation Service, DTVS) is being developed in conjunction with Data61.
The first stage of the Digital Twin MVP is creating a high-resolution four-dimensional model based on three-dimensional aerial imagery and LiDAR, integrated with the state’s digital cadastre (record and location of land parcels). Transport, utilities, planning, natural resource management, environmental management and emergency management data is being progressively added. The platform also integrates Digital Engineering assets, Building Information Models, and live API feeds for public transport, air quality, and energy production. The platform is also designed to integrate with the NSW Spatial Collaboration Portal that provides a central point to search, discover and share spatial information.
While primarily focused on supporting infrastructure planning and delivery, this platform has benefits at national, state and local government levels, for industry and for the community. Its benefits are also broad, spanning all sectors – infrastructure planning and delivery, planning, service delivery, environmental management, natural resource management, as well as emergency management and counterterrorism.
Further engagement with local, state, federal government agencies as well as industry bodies will see further development and refinement of the platform.