Now, drones to survey Dubai lands for new projects

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The drones will provide up to 200 times better clarity than the maps by conventional surveys

Dubai Municipality launched new drone technology to help developers survey lands and build new projects quicker and more efficiently.
 
The new Aerial Survey service provides real estate companies, consultants and contractors with detailed data of rectified orthophotos, topographic maps with up to 200 times better clarity than the maps by conventional surveys. It will also provide contour maps and 3D points for large-scale projects with vast spaces and rocky geographies, all of which are produced through high-res images with 88 per cent less time and effort than the traditional surveys.
 
Eng. Dawood Al Hajiri, Assistant Director General of Dubai Municipality for Engineering and Planning Sector, said with the conventional surveys, the department needed about six months to extract big files of data. Now, however, the high-res images are processed on the next day using the drones.
 
While the service benefited the civic body's internal projects, such as Dubai Safari, it is now available for use to other developers across Dubai.
 
Al Hajiri said the drones will keep up with Dubai's quick development pace that needs to be followed up every six months.
 
“Our growth is quick and we need following up every six months, compared to other countries that need surveying every five years. The drones will help developers record the progress of their projects every week without the need to visit the site,” said Al Hajiri.
 
He said the service was used to monitor Dubai Safari Park's progress every month. The park is scheduled to open before end of this year.
 
Mohammed Mashroom, Director of the municipality's survey department, said with currently one drone is available, it will save large amounts of money, effort and time especially that Dubai is approaching mega projects. Two additional drones are expected to launch in the coming period depending on number of applications the municipality receives. .
 
Surveying maps are sometimes required for 500km square. which involves up to 4,000 working days and costs about Dh6.5 million. Construction areas witnessed an increase from 5,035 in 2014 to 11,413 in 2016.
 
“Dubai is developing fast and if we follow the conventional methods, we will not be able to follow up the different requirements,” said Mashroom.
 
He added the technology shows developers what exists on ground and challenges lying ahead of their construction and plan.
 
“Instead of sending surveyors, especially to the mountainous areas that are challenging to monitor and scan, the drones will save the trouble and help us get quick results,” said Mashroom.
 
Developers can now register for the service via the municipality's website and will pay a service fee depending on the service they ask for, be it contour maps or topographic maps.

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Developers will access maps through app

The Survey Department unveiled a smart App, which will reduce the time and effort of developers, contractors, construction consultants, landowners, government and semi-governmental institutions.
 
“Kharetati” (My map) will enable mobile customers to request access to the land maps without having to attend Dubai Municipality center branches.
 
The app, which will be available in the next three weeks on Google Play Store, Android and Apple store, will allow customers to enter the number of the plot and a copy of their IDs (from both sides) to avail the land map.
 
The app saves 75 per cent of the transaction time, and its improvements have helped in reducing 67 per cent of time required to complete the transaction, 79 per cent in the number of required documents, and 75 per cent in the number of mandatory fields.
 
The App has also contributed in reducing the number of government agencies participating in the procedures of service delivery when submitting the request from three government agencies to zero governmental entities.
 
The App is a new smart channel added to the multiple channels of Dubai Municipality that identify the needs and expectations of its customers in different categories. These channels include the Municipality Suggestion Scheme, Call Center, complaints system, customer forums, customer satisfaction studies, and the happiness screens at various service delivery sites.

How the drone works

Developers register for required service through Dubai Municipality's website under Survey Department Services. The Aerial Surveying service provides different kinds of imaging.

The footage can then be forwarded through email or any other preferred software.

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author

Sherouk Zakaria

“Born and raised in UAE, Sherouk Zakaria is a Senior Correspondent at Khaleej Times. Joined since May 2016, she covers Dubai Municipality, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), special events and humanitarian issues. Her choice of journalism as a career stems from her passion of telling people's stories and writing to inspire or make a difference. In her free time, she's an occasional theater and film actress. Sherouk received her BA in Mass Communications from the American University in Sharjah in 2013. Before joining Khaleej Times, she was a senior lifestyle/entertainment editor for a magazine in Dubai.”




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