14.03.12

Ordnance survey maps progress in high resolution

Chris Fitzsimmons reports from the new home of the Ordnance Survey at Adanac Park, near Southampton in southern England. The world’s leading data and mapping organisation now boasts a 21st century building to match its status.

Since its creation in 1791 Ordnance Survey has always striven to be at the leading edge of technology. Its first innovation was the adoption of the Ramsden theodolite for the creation of the first accurate maps of Great Britain, and has continued through to the modern digital age.

Much of Ordnance Survey’s business now depends on highly accurate digital data or geographic information (GI) about the landscape of Great Britain with digital data sales now far outweighing the popular paper map series for which Ordnance Survey is well known. Its contributions to the geographic information industry are such that Greg Tumilty, Building and Property Services Manager at Ordnance Survey estimates that the organisation now underpins some £160bn worth of the UK economy, thanks to its contributions to businesses like satellite navigation.

So why the need for a new building? “We were in a 60’s built, civil service establishment built for 4,000. It was a massive building, difficult to maintain and costly, not sustainable and it didn’t befit the modern business that we are,” commented Tumilty.

“We wanted a building that would be technologically sound, sustainable and green whilst meeting the needs of modern day Ordnance  Survey.

Tumilty went on to explain some of the key requirements of the new site: “One of the main things from an AV perspective is that we want to have the best possible quality of audiovisual facilities on the public side of the building to show the quality of mapping we have.”

InAVate was lucky enough to be invited along to see exactly how that has been achieved, and if you'd like to read all about it, then hit the link below to see it in our Jan/Feb digital edition.