Monday, March 23, 2009
#657 ... On the street where you live
Terralink International is filming the view from every road in New Zealand over the next two years, in an initiative that will benefit local authorities.
Streetcam, a van (this one pictured in Cuba Street, Wellington) with six video cameras strapped to its roof, will drive down every road in the country on a journey of 144,000kms. The resulting video record will take New Zealand into a new era of geographic information, providing a new level of understanding for police, councils, tourism, utility companies and road accident research.
Street view video is beginning to be used around the world in a variety of applications, such as Google Earth, where street view video is available for select areas of some US cities.
“This is the first time such detailed video data combined with GPS has been collected from every corner of New Zealand. It’s going to allow us to enrich our base data,”
“We currently use our aerial photographs to assist us with collecting data and Streetcam will enable us to have a fuller picture. It will be very useful for quickly and accurately pinpointing locations.
“For instance, the police and emergency services could use Streetcam data to quickly pinpoint a particular building, and road accident experts could use it to rate the safety of roads. It’ll help local councils and government organisations manage their assets by giving them the exact location of their asset as well as a photo. Assets can range from a power pole to a drainage cover. This will minimise loss of time by contractors trying to identify exactly where that asset is.
Streetcam is expected to take around two years to complete filming of the entire country. The data will be regularly updated, which will provide a unique historical record of changes to vegetation and streetscapes.