London 2012: Mapping the OlympicsJune 25, 2012 No Comments
Hosting the 2012 Summer Olympics poses some unique challenges to the United Kingdom, many of which GIS can help with. Events are going to be held all across the nation, with London as the central hub. So how can maps help to coordinate the huge influx of visitors?
For starters, the National Policing Improvement Agency has trained all of the UK’s 250,000 police officers and staff on using specialized GIS tools to prepare for the games (http://www.publicservice.co.uk/feature_story.asp?id=18576) The tools are intended to defend against threats such as terrorism, public disorder, domestic extremism, organized crime, and natural hazards.
Public transportation is a big concern for the upcoming games, especially considering London scored poorly on the International Olympic Committee’s initial evaluation. There’s no doubt GIS played an important role in the expansion of the East London Line, as well as various upgrades to existing lines. In addition, a collaborative effort between the UK’s transportation agencies and the Mayor of London has created Get Ahead of the Games (http://www.getaheadofthegames.com/), an interactive map website that makes planning travel easier during the Olympic Games. (as seen below)
The construction of the 2012 Olympics site also relied heavily on geospatial technology. A report (http://learninglegacy.london2012.com/documents/pdfs/systems-and-technology/278-use-of-gis-for-data-management-s-t.pdf) by the Olympic Delivery Authority discusses the creation of a web-based GIS viewer and visualization tool that allowed all of the various contractors working at the site to access and share over 2 million pieces of geospatial data.
Let’s not forget about the torch relay. Prior to and throughout the relay some great interactive maps have been popping up. This year is easier than ever for residents to find out where and when events near them are happening. Aside from the official map, the BBC has also put to together a great interactive map (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-13391986), and you can get a hold of the GIS data through ArcGIS.com (http://www.arcgis.com/home/item.html?id=c2af103b75a24d8fadc7fbaf84ba9f92).
I don’t know about you, but I sure am excited for the games to begin!
By Tom Koehler, GIS ConsultantShare on Facebook GIS, Uncategorized