Friday, October 11, 2013

The Map of Life in the Netherlands

What happens when we all have direct and open insight into our cities? OSCity provides a platform for Dutch citizens to access spatial data that previously has only been available to local authorities, research institutes and urban planners.

The new platform OScity, currently in beta, plots how space is used in the Netherlands and provides users with easy access to data about levels of flooding, heritage sites, office space, energy consumption, and much more.

The OSCity platform is built upon the Google Maps API but employs open data, GIS techniques, infographics, and interactive simulations to analyse spatial patterns and allows for the ‘discovery’ of innovative spatial scenarios for neighbourhoods that are being restructured.

There are five main sections to OSCity, each section visualizing important spatial data about life in the Netherlands. The 'commons' section explores where people live and work in the Netherlands and the influence of house prices, income and other factors on social planning. A section on 'water land' looks at the risk of flooding in the Netherlands and at flooding prevention methods.

The 'cultural heritage' section examines the age of Dutch buildings and the spatial distribution and density of national monuments. 'Vacant buildings' explores the distribution of vacant offices, the price of office real-estate and the potential for converting commercial property into residential property. The 'energy' section visualizes the energy efficiency of Dutch buildings.

OSCity also includes a powerful search function that allows users to visualize heat maps for a huge number of different queries. For example, it is possible to search for the proximity of locations to 'schools', 'doctors', 'supermarkets', 'museums' etc and/or search for a wide range of demographic spatial distributions.

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