Bluesky 3D models help Anglian Water improve infrastructure

Highly detailed 3D models, derived from the latest aerial photography, are helping Anglian Water design, build and communicate major infrastructure and non-infrastructure asset projects across the east of England.

Created by aerial mapping company Bluesky, the 3D models are being used by the @one Alliance, a collaboration of consultants and contractors working together to deliver more than half of Anglian Water’s capital investment programme.

The Bluesky models are being used to create 3D animations and fly-throughs that communicate potentially complex plans in an easy-to-interpret and engaging way.

Examples of projects where the Bluesky models have already been used by the @one Alliance include a £3m scheme to upgrade pumping stations and reduce the risk of flooding in Great Yarmouth and an ambitious project to relocate Cambridge’s Waste Water Recycling facility to Waterbeach.

“The models from Bluesky are an important starting point when developing a digital project environment,” said Clare Kovaks, 4D Planner at the Anglian Water @one Alliance. “The Bluesky models enable us to create understandable but still accurate visualisations that are used at every stage of the project lifecycle. We use the Bluesky models to inform designs, communicate ideas and gather public support.

“In addition to helping communicate and engage, the Bluesky models also allows us to digitally rehearse the build sequence, giving the model context,” continued Kovaks. “This can highlight potential issues onsite saving time, and therefore costs, and mitigating risk.”

The Bluesky 3D models are photogrammetrically derived from high resolution stereo aerial photography. Supplied ready to use in Google SketchUp, and onward use in 4D construction scheduling software Synchro, the Bluesky models provide a detailed visualisation of the environment allowing for interaction, analysis and interrogation of the landscape and infrastructure. Geographically accurate, the 3D models also included a digital terrain model (DTM).

The Anglian Water @one Alliance comprises consultants, contractors, and other stakeholders who together will deliver projects accounting for over half of Anglian Water’s capital investment programme.

The @one Alliance will design and build around 800 schemes worth approximately £1.2bn, including water and water recycling treatment centres serving more than six million people in eastern England (and the Hartlepool Water region) and maintaining/improving the region’s water mains and sewerage network.

Alliance partners are Anglian Water Asset Delivery, Balfour Beatty, Barhale, MMB, SWECO, Skanska and Stantec Treatment.

Bluesky is a specialist in aerial survey including aerial photography, LiDAR and thermal data.

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