Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Google Cities in 3D Program

via Got 3D data- and DirectionsMag

SNAG-0002 Google solicits building model data from local governments via its "Google Cities in 3D Program". Google advertises the program as a means for government to share its data with other stake-holders as well as the general public.

If you have LIDAR data for your city then you must give LIDAR Analyst a try. LIDAR Analyst not only can extract your buildings but will also export it to KML files - which can then be provided to other users either through the "Google Cities in 3D Program" or via your own website. In addition you can also provide Google with your bare-earth DEMs, as well as tree and forest layers that you extracted using LIDAR Analyst.


Here is what Google has to say about the data formats that they will accept towards this program. (http://earth.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=90969)

  • What file formats can be uploaded into the 3D Warehouse?

    • SketchUp ".skp"
    • Google Earth ".kmz" (LIDAR Analyst will output KML files - which need to be zipped and renamed to KMZ)
    • COLLADA ".dae"

  • What 3D data types does Google accept?

    • Photo-textured 3D buildings in any of the following file formats:
      • .shp, .kmz, .skp, .dae, .3ds, .max.
    • Non-textured 3D buildings in any of the following file formats:
      • .shp, .kmz, .skp, .dae, .3ds, .max.
    • Building footprints with heights (extruded or has z-value)
      • .shp, .csv, .kmz.(LIDAR Analyst can provide you attributed buildings with z-values in shp as well as KML formats).

    In the current version of LIDAR Analyst - features can be exported as kml files. KMZ files - are just zipped kml files. In a future release, you will be able to export features directly to the KMZ file format.


    SNAG-0000 Building footprints (red) shown on top of the hill-shaded last return DEM. Buildings were auto-magically extracted from first and last return DEMs. (LIDAR Analyst is a plugin that works with ArcMAP and Erdas Imagine).





    SNAG-0001 Building footprints exported as a KML file to Google Earth.

    SNAG-0003 Building footprints exported as extruded building models to Google Earth.

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