If you’ve noticed a small plane flying around over Christchurch recently, it may be Landpro working on its latest aerial survey project, to learn more about the changing shape of our city.
Landpro specialises in land surveying, mapping and planning throughout New Zealand and is currently using their twin-prop aircraft for a large-scale project in Christchurch.
Mike Borthwick, Director says surveying and mapping helps to ensure efficient development and use of land.
“We are often involved in regional, environmental and Resource Management planning, for which aerial and land surveys are essential“ Mike says. “Aerial survey allows for the right accuracy, resolution and detail for more large-scale jobs and our team of planners and scientists use the information to ensure the best strategies are applied.”
The aircraft ZK-SVY is currently undertaking a high-resolution survey of the greater Christchurch area. The data from this survey will enable Christchurch to lead the way in sustainable and efficient design and development in future.
Mike says completing this survey will require a large number of flight lines backwards and forwards over the city. He says to keep the amount of flying to a minimum, operations are being scheduled outside commercial airline flight operations times, which means some night time operations.
“We are working closely with Airways Corporation, who control the airspace around Christchurch,” he says. “All our aerial surveying complies with air safety regulations. This includes flying above 3000ft and operating within specific hours set by Airways to avoid interfering with commercial flight paths. We realise this may be an unwelcome annoyance for some, and apologise to anyone our aerial work has disrupted.”
Landpro says the aerial work won’t last much longer – the company expects to complete the project within the next two weeks, subject to weather.
Details of upcoming flight times in urban areas will be updated frequently.
What work is this aircraft being used for?
The aircraft is capturing a high density aerial (LiDAR*) topographic survey of Christchurch. These surveys are routinely captured and the last time this was captured over Christchurch was 8/Feb/2019.
Why is this aircraft flying low?
The aircraft is required to fly low to capture up to 16 pulse returns per metre for highly accurate topographic mapping of the natural environment, city surfaces and the built environment.
How long will this work be carried out?
The work is due to be completed today (weather and flight clearance dependant). The company has been asked not to fly past 20:00 for the remainder of the project.
Why is this air craft being flown at night?
The aircraft has been coordinating with air traffic control to get flight clearance. Unfortunately they have not been given the airspace during the day so have had to fly into the night.
Why does this aircraft fly over the same area multiple times?
The flights are conducted with front and side overlap in their capture swathes so a continuous ground and surface model can be extrapolated.
*LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) data, or height data, is precise laser measurements of the Earth's surface that is used for creating highly accurate 3D maps of the land. Having better elevation data will enable the city council to map infrastructure including transport network and impervious surfaces and improve the slope and elevation information that go into Land Information Memorandum reports. LiDAR topographic datasets are also foundational datasets that scientists use to improve geological, flood and coastal natural hazard models. It provides land information to benefit better planning for development, engineering, architecture, and design applications by the private sector and is available to the public via open data on Canterbury Maps, a joint project by regional and territorial councils of Canterbury.