Re-imagining City Planning



Smart Development

Managing urban areas has become one of the most important development challenges of the 21st century. Success or failure in building sustainable cities will be a major factor in the success of the economic, socio-economic and climate change agendas of governments.

Over the next three decades, the population across major Asian cities will urbanize at a rapid pace (over 3% annually, while land expansion is estimated at 2.4%). National development planners and urban planners are seeking fresh ideas on how to meet this sustained surge in demand.

A desired state for every city will be to improve livability and performance of urban systems while reducing waste, emissions and resource consumption.

Smart Planning

Smarter Development starts with a vision for creating more livable cities that balance the vision of governments, ambitions of real estate developers and the concerns and needs of residents. Projects move forward with greater efficiency and reliability when developers, architects, investors, brokers, authorities and city planners have a shared understanding of what is being built. Making information like development codes, master plans, design data, operational and environmental data available via the web means better understanding and more livable cities.

A data-driven, intuitive and imaginative planning process aided by instant real-world 3D rendering improves communication and hence collaboration, innovation and speed. This is the principle behind Smart Planning.

In most cities, information required for analysis and decision making is often spread across multiple out-of-date data sources. City planners propose overlapping building codes without understanding the impact on development. Real estate developers often face conflicts and ambiguity in arbitrary zoning codes that increase risk, drive up cost, and discourage investment. All these can have a big impact on development outcomes.

We believe that data, analytics, and powerful visualization can help bridge understanding between stakeholders and result in better product selection, smarter growth, faster and more sustainable development and better resource planning and management.

The Fabric

Cities are complex self organized systems with constantly changing properties and emerging mathematical regularities. We develop innovative and highly intuitive 3D geospatial modeling tools to analyse and visualize cities with their complex eco-systems, revealing the fundamental links between urban form and the social, economic and environmental performance of cities.

Urbanetic Fabric aggregates geographic data from public and private sources to build a three-dimensional parameterized visualization. Alongside rendering of the existing landscape, Fabric can determine and show what can be built on a lot or a parcel under the prevailing building code and the given urban morphology. It considers thousands of code sections for land use guidelines, height limits, floor area limits, setbacks, and view access rights as well as the locations of major buildings, places of interest, protected trees and daylight shadows to project what can be built and how it fits into the existing environment.

Design for Performance

At Urbanetic, the core principle behind development is to enable “Design for Performance” (DFP) at the planning stage. When planners are able to test the performance of their ideas early on they save time and money and deliver better results. Fabric’s scenario simulation engine allows association of attribute data to features to test out resource performance at the precinct scale. This powerful feature is also useful to city councils for testing the compliance and sustainability of proposed developments.

Fabric is designed to understand the relationships between parcels, buildings, streets, sightlines, watersheds, elevation, and other geographic features. Typically this process takes an expert hours to complete for a single parcel; Fabric can recompute an entire neighbourhood in seconds. Not only that, with Fabric, one can simulate future scenarios by changing input parameters and visually see the changes in outputs.

Long before the planning team is selected, Master Developers can use Fabric early on to generate multiple plans for a given site, simplifying the search for the best option.

With cities becoming increasingly dense, each new requirement of zoning change impacts sustainability and convenience for people. Municipalities and developers need better ways to explain what is happening. At the same time data and analytics must be used to improve liveability, reduce the cost of resources and construction and meet the demands of a growing population.