Transforming Digital Mapping: Indian Cities To Get Virtual Replicas, Aiding Urban Planning And Policymaking Efforts


In line with the objectives outlined in the national geospatial policy, the Survey of India (SOI), responsible for India’s cartography, has entered into an agreement with Genesys International, an Indian private mapping firm.

This pioneer collaboration will work to replicate urban landscapes and physical assets with precise details, and produce their three-dimensional maps, with the aim of establishing ‘digital replicas’ of key cities and towns across the nation by 2035, as reported by Economic Times.

Creating digital duplicates of cities will help not just planning and policymaking, but also managing disasters.

This is due to the comprehensive information they provide on the vulnerability of properties and infrastructure via digital terrain or surface models.

So far, the company has developed these ‘digital twins’ for cities such as Ayodhya, the Dharavi slum cluster in Mumbai, Kochi, and Kanpur.

The system represents a virtual duplicate of a tangible entity, operation, or service.

It can aid in improved decision-making for a wide range of amenities and services in urban settings such as traffic coordination and planning, infrastructure and real estate development, revenue gathering, and environmental planning.

The virtual replica of physical assets will help policymakers in comprehending how infrastructure will operate under various circumstances, such as high-traffic events, population growth, or in the face of natural disasters.

Under its partnership, the Genesys International will use the SOI’s advanced national survey network, comprising over 900 continuously operating reference stations (CORS).

This network offers real-time mapping and positioning services with an impressive accuracy of +/- 3 cm. Moreover, it provides a variety of positioning services tailored to meet the diverse needs of the geospatial and scientific community.

“The integration of our CORS technology with Genesys’ mapping expertise will elevate the accuracy and reliability of geospatial data, unlocking new possibilities for India’s development,” said Hitesh Kumar Makwana, Surveyor General of India.

Sajid Mailk, CMD of Genesys International, shared, “We have been working on the project for the last one and a half years. We have already finished a 2D map of entire India, where we have digitised 8.5 million km of the road network, and we have done around 1 million km of 360-degree panoramic imagery across India covering more than 1,500 towns and cities. We have almost 40 million of points of interest and addresses,”

The decision by SOI to make data sets available to the private sector aligns with the national geospatial policy. This policy’s objective is to produce high-resolution topographic maps that cover the entire country by the year 2030.