Swindon Borough Council:
Economic Development 3D Map

Reducing planning application processes & improving stakeholder communication.

Swindon council logo

Executive Summary

CartoConsult, were commissioned by the Planning Department at Swindon Borough Council (SBC) to use Carto3D to help reduce planning application turnaround time and enhance the quality of private and public stakeholder communication across the borough. They also wanted to move into the Smart City arena and be future proofed.

Using Carto3D as the digital map, gave (SBC) the flexibility to mould the product to their requirements. Leaning on SBC’s Public Sector Mapping Agreement (PSMA) with Ordnance Survey (OS), CartoConsult had access to reliable location based data to integrate alongside SBC’s own bespoke GIS analysis output data.

Carto3D was deployed as a 2D and 3D GIS digital map, accessed through an internet browser, requiring very little end user training and no specialist software.


SBC take a traditional approach to planning applications and communication. This is often slow and bureaucratic. Departments work in silos with varying formats and currency of information in which to review a planning application, large or small.

SBC challenged CartoConsult to review the current processes and available information/data (including their planning portal), and use Carto3D to reduce time for planning applications whilst improving communication to private and public stakeholders.

Carto 3D Design

Carto3D is an innovative 2D and 3D digital mapping platform for Local Government. Based on open architecture, Carto3D is flexible to a client’s needs and visualises GIS data, databases, spreadsheets and imagery.

The application is 100% web based, using the latest in web streaming and 3D technology, meaning there is very little need for training and no need for specialist software other than a free web browser.

Carto3D can be used through smartphones, tablets or traditional computers. Risk is low, Return on Investment is high, with an organisation wide enterprise licence paid on annual subscription.

Carto 3D


Planning, Highways, Property, Architecture and Social departments were all able to open up data and information for Carto3D to expose. Links to the planning portal application data was visualised by joining with OS MasterMap data, fully interactive.

Proposed developments can now be visualised in the real world, enhancing reliable decision making and improving stakeholder engagement. Land registry boundaries can be viewed and interrogated.

This has helped speed up the internal assessment of applications, reducing the historic resource intensive approach and ultimately helping Swindon build 26,000 homes within the next 10 years.

Key Stats

  • Over 50 GIS datasets
  • Smart 3DGIS buildings
  • Ordnance Survey data from PSMA
  • 100% web architecture
  • Smart City ready
  • Scalable, future proofed
Dave Rowe

Dave Rowe, Principle Developer, The Carto Group.

About the Author

Dave is an open data advocate, always looking to deliver as much value as possible from clients data.

Microsoft Certified in cloud Azure stacks, Dave is an awesome GIS Software Engineer that takes web GIS applications to the highest level.

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