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OS OpenData mapping significantly improves cost and time efficiency

  • OS OpenData is now, undoubtedly, our first choice for overview project mapping and independent GIS data verification in the UK. The process is much more straightforward and in turn provides significant cost efficiencies.

    Jonathan Millar, Project and IT Manager, Rubicon Heritage

For more than 10 years, Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd have been providing private and public sector customers with an efficient and reliable consultancy service, using their expertise to meet any archaeological or heritage requirements – from planning through to construction and beyond. Projects are varied and can range from a wind farm walkover to complex large-scale urban excavation.

The challenge

It was vital for Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd to have absolute confidence that their teams out in the field, across the UK, could rely on their survey equipment to cope with the job. The first stage of a project involves verification of data, establishing background mapping and deciding a survey methodology – Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd needed the right tools to access background mapping with speed and accuracy.

The solution

Great Britain’s national mapping agency, Ordnance Survey, makes a number of datasets available free of charge under the terms of an OS OpenData Licence. These datasets include raster and vector mapping, height, boundary and gazetteer products, making OS OpenData an ideal solution for Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd – providing them with the background mapping they required, free of charge, available on demand and without any complicated licensing restrictions.

Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd use background mapping in their survey equipment to act as a benchmark for field survey – this gives them real-time verification that the primary data is being collected correctly. Through OS OpenData, they typically download OS VectorMap District and OS Street View for new projects and, in addition to this, regularly refer to other OS OpenData products too – for example, MiniScale and Land-Form PANORAMA. OS OpenData has equipped Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd with an easily-accessible and instant verification of survey accuracy in the field, which fits seamlessly into their project workflow.

The benefits

  • Confidence – Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd are absolutely certain that OS OpenData is the best background mapping available.
  • Accessibility – project-specific tiles are available for download the instant an address is confirmed.
  • Simplicity – there is no debate over licensing; it is only necessary to change the date on the graphics and CAD templates once a year.
  • Coverage and consistency – it doesn’t matter if projects are located in the Orkneys or Cornwall; the mapping is always ready and waiting.

The products used

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