こんにちは (Konnichiwa)

Our latest building data import is from the country of rising sun — Japan!

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Registration with authorities and download procedures are a little more complex in Japanese. Also file formats are, let’s say, very traditional XML structures. We’ve had quite some scripting work to do but it’s been clearly worth the effort.

We finally managed to add more than 60 Million buildings to our database.

First reviews confirmed a large number of valid polygons but also unexpected splits, see below.


One of the largest marketplaces for data is Amazon Web Services (AWS) Marketplace. Therefore we are pleased to offer 3dbuildings data there.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Marketplace enables customers to find the right data and services for purchase on their platform. It offers a wide range of pricing models and deployment options.

Since the number of 3dbuildings customers who are active in the AWS is growing, we also wanted to give users the opportunity to benefit from 3dbuildings solutions.

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https://aws.amazon.com/marketplace/pp/prodview-7xpxdykk2quag?qid=1608131024324

Therefore we are very pleased that 3dbuildings data is now also available on AWS Marketplace to a large number of customers. This offers the great advantage that they can find everything they need to build their own application from a single source. …


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In GIS, the most common way to get a feeling about a data set and to assess its quality is visual inspection. Artefacts or plausibility errors are easy to detect this way.

In 3d, things also look nice. We’d like to show you how to achieve this in QGIS. QGIS is the most frequently used open source and free desktop GIS solution and it’s well suited for this kind of work. It can read many vector and raster formats and provide a 3d map view from different sources. For a nice looking visualisation, follow these steps:

  1. If you don’t have QGIS on your computer, download and install the software from: https://qgis.org/

With the latest updates to our database, we can now offer an incredible 99% coverage for the great nation of España.

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Spain: we’ve got you covered.

As we start opening our advent calendars, work continues at a pace here in 3dbuildings Berlin HQ. Latest job has been to integrate the official building data set of Spain into our database.

With all of our data sources combined, we now have more than 12 million buildings available for Spain and her islands.

After geometry validation routines and manual checks of popular places, we now estimate 99% building coverage for the country. Vámonos muchachas.

Next step: height integrations. Watch this space. And have a safe and happy holiday season.

Want to explore Spain and beyond for yourself? Head over to the new 3dbuildings website and give it a try. Thanks for reading!


Deutschland is kind of a big deal when it comes to big data, but that doesn’t mean that it’s easy to work with. Until now.

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39 million buildings, and counting.

State of the nation

In Germany, the accumulation and monitoring of geodata is the duty of the sixteen federal states. The states maintain all the sources and have an agreement among each other about available formats and data interoperability. Sounds great, right?

Sadly, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a piece of cake to import all this geodata at once. As usual, the devil is in the detail.

Looking at the data, we could see straight away that each federal state feels distinctly unique and individual — and that’s not a good thing. It’s a similar story in some big corporations: One hand doesn’t know what the other is doing. …


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Big news for Down Under: Microsoft’s Open Data department have just released a new dataset for Australia. Machine learning algorithms were used to detect 11 Million building footprints in the country.

Before diving right in and adding the data to our database, we ran our usual stringent QA checks to make sure that the data passes muster. Without giving too much away, we used various geometry checks for the task, including self-intersection testing, and checking to see whether any polygon rings are touching one another.

Then we ran manual visualization checks on the new source. This is necessary because we’ve found strange artefacts in Microsoft building data in the past, and we want to make sure we only have good stuff in our database. With this clean and comprehensive Antipodean dataset, we’re well on the way to our goal of 600 million buildings at your fingertips. …


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Last time, we brought you Estonia. Today we’re happy to announce the fruits of our latest labours: The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Also known as: Luxembourg.

Here’s where we made a difference:

  • Total building count for the country has increased to 292k.
  • More than 33% of buildings now have height information (up from 1.2%).

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At 3dbuildings we’re always working to bring you the global datasets necessary for your project. Today we’re rolling out expanded coverage for (drum roll): Estonia.

The stats that matter:

  • Total building count for the country has increased to 920,000.
  • Type attribute is now available for 86% of buildings.
  • More than 20% of buildings now have height information (up from 1.5%).

To experiment with the 3dbuildings map, head to the website and use the search field to find the area that you need for your project.


Collecting data from open sources, cleaning, fixing and mixing it is easy. You just need to practice for 10,000 hours.

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Sao Paulo (OSM Buildings)

Our biggest source of building data is OpenStreetMap. OSM has a number of unique selling points:

  • Strong global coverage
  • Highest number of common attributes per building
  • Good accuracy due to ground truth mapping, or mapping from high-res imagery
  • Updated every minute

OSM’s 400 million buildings (as of July 2020) create a strong base for the subsequent processing work that we do.


We found something intriguing on Twitter the other day…

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TL;DR — You won’t.

This was a a neat Twitter find promising the holy grail, the elixir of eternal life (in 3d mapping communities anyway): a smart building created in under 20 minutes.

Let’s just think about what you’ll need to to make this happen. You’re going to need a proper internet connection to make this work with cloud-based computing platforms. You’ll then need a security setup that has the required firewall settings or even a VPN setup.

Next you’ll need a digital floor plan, or even better a BIM (Building Information Modeling) model. …

About

3DBuildings

Clean and comprehensive worldwide building data.

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