3D church Unterägeri

Designing better public spaces in the digital realm 

Improving urban design and development with 3D Digital Twins

3D model of green areas in Unterägeri, Switzerland

In an era where the design and development of public spaces play a crucial role in creating vibrant and livable cities, harnessing the power of emerging technologies is essential. One such technology revolutionizing urban design and development is the utilization of 3D data and digital twins.

A holistic approach to designing public spaces

Traditional design processes often rely on 2D plans and sketches, which limit the ability to fully understand the spatial context, for example the potential impact of a design, its integration in the built world, shadows impact, or sunlight exposure. However, by utilizing 3D data and digital twins, designers and urban planners can create a comprehensive virtual replica of the physical environment. A digital twin is a dynamic, data-driven virtual representation of a real-world asset to provide an accurate, immersive and exhaustive representation of a public space.

Improving collaboration and stakeholder engagement

With the help of digital twins, architects, planners and policymakers can share the virtual environment with various stakeholders, including local communities, city officials, and environmental agencies. Furthermore digital twins can serve as a tool for participatory design. By involving the community in the decision-making process, those responsible can ensure that public spaces are tailored to the specific needs and aspirations of the people who will use them.

Data-driven design and adaptive planning

The integration of 3D data and digital twins empowers designers and landscape architects to make informed decisions based on real-world data and insights. By analyzing the data within the context of a digital twin, the layout of public spaces can be optimized, amenities can be strategically positioned, and the overall user experience gets improved. Moreover, digital twins allow for adaptive planning, enabling the monitoring and evaluation of the performance of public spaces over time and allow faster and more efficient adjustments where necessary.

Use Case #1: Bridging communities through 3D visualization

In the pursuit of creating connected communities, the visualization of urban projects plays a pivotal role. In November 2022 Nomoko was assigned by Unteraegeri and Oberaegeri, two municipalities in the canton of Zug, to showcase how the communities can be bridged together.

The two towns, located on the same shore side of Lake Aegeri, envisioned a grand project to connect the two communities through a magnificent lakeside promenade. The objective was to create a shared space that would foster recreational activities, promote social interaction, and enhance the overall well-being of residents and visitors.

View of 3D model of Lake Ägeri

3D model of Ägeri lakeside promenade project

Expertise in 3D data became instrumental in bringing this visionary project to life and transformed the initial concept into an immersive and realistic virtual representation. The advanced 3D data and visualization capabilities accurately portrayed the surrounding natural environment, existing infrastructure, and architectural elements, providing an authentic representation of the future lakeside promenade.

The case study of the Unteraegeri-Oberaegeri lakeside promenade project demonstrates how 3D data and digital twins can transcend traditional boundaries and unite communities through visionary urban design. Furthermore, they form an important foundation in communication as well as in political decision-making, as they help to understand the undertaking in a more comprehensive way.

Use Case #2: 3D visualization empowers residents in city center redevelopment

The Swiss town of Fällanden, canton of Zürich, embarked on a significant redevelopment project to create a new city center and modernize its Townhall. To ensure an inclusive and transparent decision-making process, Fällanden collaborated with SKW Architects and sought a solution to visualize the project in the context of the village.

In January 2022, a highly detailed 3D model of Fällanden was created, incorporating the new central development project. The objective was to provide an interactive tool that would allow citizens to experience the project from multiple perspectives and understand how it harmonizes with the existing village.

Digital Twin of Fällanden

Interactive 3D model of Fällanden

This interactive model, surpassing traditional renderings and abstract 3D representations, would be made available on the town’s website, enabling residents to explore and engage with the proposed design firsthand. By offering a more immersive and realistic visualization, the solution Nomoko provided facilitated a deeper understanding and involvement of the public in the decision-making process for the Fällanden redevelopment project.

Use Case #3: Revitalizing a train station and creating an encounter zone

The town of Weinfelden, canton of Thurgau, had a bold vision for its train station – to create a lively and inviting space where people could connect and engage, rather than just pass through. To bring this vision to life, Weinfelden collaborated in spring 2022 with Nomoko to develop a digital twin of this building project.

Weinfelden’s ambition was to transform the train station into a lively meeting point, a place that fostered community interaction and became a vibrant hub of activity. Recognizing the importance of public engagement, the city sought to involve its residents in the decision-making process.

3D model of Weinfelden train station

By creating a digital twin of the area around the train station and integrating the CAD model of the new project, Nomoko provided a realistic and immersive experience for stakeholders and citizens. The digital twin showcased the architectural design, spatial layout, and overall ambiance of the envisioned station.

The initiative to revitalize the train station aligns with Weinfelden’s commitment to urban transformation and creating spaces that reflect the needs of the community. The digital twin not only served as a powerful tool for visualization but also facilitated transparent communication and collaboration among stakeholders. It allowed residents to provide feedback, offer suggestions, and actively participate in shaping the development plans.

Forging new realities and embracing digital twins for public space design

In each of these use cases, the advanced Nomoko 3D technology has demonstrated its ability to transcend traditional boundaries, redefine perceptions, and enhance the way we design, experience, and shape public spaces. Smarter designed public spaces ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all inhabitants of all ages. As the design and development of public spaces continue to evolve, embracing innovative approaches like 3D data and digital twins is crucial to make cities inclusive, sustainable, and safe.

Digital twins are also vital for designing better public spaces in the realm of politics. They offer realistic visualizations, aiding politicians and communities in making informed decisions for projects. Digital twins facilitate transparent communication with the public, gathering valuable feedback. They help assess feasibility and cost-effectiveness, optimizing resource allocation. They serve as powerful communication tools, bridging the gap between politicians and the public, garnering support, building trust for successful project adoption, leading to more sustainable, inclusive, and vibrant public spaces for the local communities.

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