Monday, 7 August 2017

Join Massey's Geo Collaboratory


By Dr Kristin Stock - Director, Geoinformatics Collaboratory & Senior Lecturer in Information Technology Institute of Natural & Mathematical Sciences, Massey University
Massey University has recently established the Massey Geoinformatics Collaboratory. The Collaboratory brings together around 40 Massey staff working in geoinformatics, GIS and geospatial science across Massey’s three campuses (Auckland, Palmerston North and Wellington) to promote collaboration in research, teaching, postgraduate supervision, and industry engagement. 

Members come from a wide range of disciplines including ecology, environmental science, agriculture, earth science, IT, marketing, planning, disaster management and health. We hold regular (more or less monthly) virtual seminars with recognised researchers from around the world on geoinformatics, GIS, and geospatial using Zoom. Recent topics include crowdsourcing of geographic information and methods for delineating landform elements.
Virtual seminars are open to everyone, and involve not only a presentation but also discussion and questions afterwards. If you would like to join our mailing list to be notified of these and other geospatial events, just drop us an email. If you would like to read more about the Collaboratory or view recordings of previous seminars, you can visit our web site at geoinformatics.massey.ac.nz.

Upcoming GIS Event




If you heading to Auckland for the NZEUC you may want to come along to Duane’s Wilkins presentation on Monday the 14th of August. For more information and to register for this event visit Eventbrite.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Rivers Workshop

Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) and NIWA have been working with regional councils on how they can make rivers data more useful. 

Both organisations recently held a workshop with Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Environment Southland, and Waikato Regional Council which looked at the potential for a new river network dataset.

Rivers data is useful for helping to understand and mitigate the impacts of floods, and LINZ is working to ensure New Zealand has geographic information that will improve our resilience to natural events. Rivers are also one of the high priority datasets identified by the Local Government Geospatial Alliance.

The next step is for LINZ to share ideas with other relevant agencies and to understand their preferences for a new river network dataset. This would inform LINZ on the priorities of this dataset and help with future work planning.

If you have any questions or ideas please contact Douglas Kwan at LINZ – dkwan@linz.govt.nz  04 830 2103

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

RetroLens.nz is your National Historic Image Resource

A historic imagery scanning project has been beavering away digitising the Crown aerial imagery archive in the interest of long term preservation, easier access, and better use of this valuable national resource. This current project underway involves digitising more than 600,000 images which date from the 1930s to present day. The project is managed by LINZ, but is a jointly funded project by the following local authorities/ shared services:
  • Auckland Council
  • Bay of Plenty Regional Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Gisborne Regional Council
  • Hawkes Bay Regional Council
  • Environment Southland
  • Tasman District Council
  • Waikato LASS
Overall, the total project cost is estimated to be $5 million, with local govt partners spending half of this value on digitising the images in their regions.
As at June 2016, 150,000 images have been scanned and delivered to the partners. It is estimated, Bay of Plenty and Gisborne to be completed in June 2018, Waikato in December 2018 and the others in 2020. The whole project is expected to be finished by 2021.
The Local Government Geospatial Alliance identified the need of its councils’ customers to access the rich resource of historical images in an open and freely accessible application. It needed to be simple and easy to use. Instead of creating several separate resources to access this resource the following local authorities / LASSes jointly funded a national website called RetroLens:
 http://hbrc.govt.nz/
 http://www.marlborough.govt.nz/
 http://www.es.govt.nz/
 http://www.tasman.govt.nz/
 http://waikatoregion.govt.nz/
http://boprc.govt.nz/
 http://canterburymaps.govt.nz/

This website, retrolens.nz , went live today ...
On the website you can search for an address or location and go back in time to see what the land was like from years gone by. You can also download a copy of the image for your own purpose.
 http://retrolens.nz/

The picture below is from Christchurch in the 1961's.


Discover what the land was like in your area, start discovering now on RetroLens.

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Freedom Camping

By the very nature of the title, it sounds like we can pack up the tent, the kids and fishing rods and head off to camp where we like and enjoy a holiday.

However that’s not quite the full story.  There are actually places where we can’t park.  Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) and Department of Conservation (DOC) have legislative requirements to manage areas where freedom camping is prohibited.  You’d be surprised how long the list of prohibited sites are across NZ.  

As a tourist, finding out where you can camp is difficult.  For a local authority, the harms associated with freedom camping are complex. The regulations tend to displace campers moving them from one location to another. However, with increasing demand this approach just shifts the problems around or exacerbates them by concentrating campers.

Managing camping as a national network could provide significant opportunities to reduce the overall impact, ensuring the network has sufficient capacity to meet the demand.  Your organisation may have already supplied freedom camping data to DIA earlier this year.  DIA were pleased with the response, but ended up with a wide range of information which was difficult to collate into a national overview.

A project is now underway to deliver a comprehensive, single source of truth about camping locations to share with tourists.  DIA and DOC are leading this work and have asked LGGA to join the project.  LGGA’s role is to assist with reviewing the freedom camping data schema and to coordinate data provision.  Bay of Plenty Regional Council will take the lead on reviewing the proposed data schema.

The end result will be  a national dataset, which is intended to be reused by route planning and camping information services such as Rankers and Geozone who provide camper apps. 

A pilot project will run from 16 December, covering areas with high visitor volumes in Coromandel and Queenstown.

The Minister has requested national coverage of freedom camping information by May 2017, ahead of the Lions’ tour and the expected flurry of international motorhome drivers.

Look out for more information on the freedom camping data schema in the next few months.


In the meantime, if you have questions please be in touch with Gill Lawrence, gill.lawrence@waikatoregion.govt.nz, Glen Clarkin, glen.clarkin@boprc.govt.nz or Nick Law nick.law@dia.govt.nz

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

LGGA @ Esri Conference - Day 3 – Building Consents

Yesterday Glen Clarkin, Western Bay of Plenty Regional Council and Sarah Cowell, Statistics New Zealand gave an update on the LGGA Building Consents project at the Esri Conference.



The aim of the project is to create an open, national spatial dataset of Building Consent data.

This dataset will be coordinated by Statistics NZ and ultimately used in their monthly statistical reporting.  

In creating this national dataset we aim to identify efficiencies and opportunities to standardise our data for both local government and Statistics NZ.  


More recently LGGA have started working with the GoShift team to coordinate our approach with Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

Check out the Building Consents User Guide for details on how to improve your data supply to Statistics New Zealand

For an overview of the project see the LGGA Building Consents blog page


Tuesday, 16 August 2016

LGGA @ Esri Conference - Day 2 - Tracks

For those of you at the Esri Conference, be sure to head to Epsom 1&2 at 4:30pm today to hear a more detailed update on LGGA.

If your Council is not listed below, we would encourage you to attend this session to find out more about the national tracks data structure, which has been adopted by Councils, Department of Conservation and the Walking Access Commission.  A national dataset of our tracks is being managed by LINZ and will be used to update the Topo50 map series.

Great photo from JustMTB.co.nz

The LGGA team have received positive feedback from those who have adopted the tracks data structure, with Councils identifying benefits for improving their own track data collection.






If you are not at Conference, then take a moment to find out more about the LGGA Tracks project from our blog page

Tracks data has been supplied by the following:

Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Central Otago District Council, Christchurch City Council, Environment Canterbury, Environment Southland, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Gisbourne District Council, Hastings District Council, Hurunui District Council, Invercargill City Council, Kawerau District Council, Mackenzie District Council, Marlborough District Council, Napier City Council, Nelson City Council, New Plymouth District Council, Opotiki District Council, Palmerston North City Council, Rotorua District Council, Tauranga City Council, Tasman District Council, Timaru District Council, Waikato District Council, Waikato Regional Council, Waipa District Council, Waitaki District Council, Wellington City Council, Western Bay of Plenty and Whakatane District Council.