Indian cities are fast getting mapped under the Geographic Information System (GIS). While Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad are already traversing the path of technological advancement. The latest to enter the bandwagon for GIS mapping is Chandigarh. 

The advent of the current government at the Centre brought with it several buzz words in the real estate sector, including the likes of Smart City and Digitisation. As the idea of digitising various processes of real estate started surfacing and getting accepted, a new concept was born – GIS Mapping. After cities such as Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad, the latest to enter the bandwagon of getting mapped under GIS was Chandigarh.

Aimed at effective administration of records pertaining to ownership, approvals, property tax and registration, this new concept is fast gaining prominence in the Indian realty landscape. Several government departments are starting to base their activities on the data recorded on the map. The most prominent move taken by the government in the recent past was in Bangalore, wherein the massive demolition drive against land encroachment on water drains was based on the GIS mapping of the city. As the concept continues to foster in the Indian cities, let us understand what exactly GIS Mapping means and its advantages for the realty landscape.

What is GIS Mapping?

A GIS is a computer system for capturing, storing, checking, and displaying data related to positions on earth's surface. GIS can show many different kinds of data on one map. This enables people to more easily see, analyse, and understand patterns. So far, a few progressive state governments have used GIS mapping to identify lands for industrialisation, for certain ideal parameters such as size, access to transportation, availability of water and distance from urban habitation etc.

What is the use of GIS Mapping in Indian market?  

In addition to helping the government gauge the legal status of land and built properties, GIS mapping is also being used for differentiating between developed and developable areas. Talking about the importance and advantage of having cities mapped under GIS, Aashiesh Agarwaal, Managing partner, Pinakin Advisors, says, “Usage of GIS mapping for urban planning is the next logical step, where planners/developers can combine various parameters to identify potential areas and the developmental needs of specific locations. To elaborate, it can potentially ascertain cost and time of transportation and housing which could help in recognising locations for acquiring projects, especially to the government which needs to identify potential locations for mass affordable housing. Another application of GIS mapping is to figure out the accessibility of a location from various amenities such as schools, primary medical care, arterial networks and groceries. This information can be analysed to detect shortcomings and accordingly provide such amenities to improve livability and quality of life for citizens in a particular locality.”

What is required to make a city GIS enabled?

At the basic level, all establishments and infrastructure in an area need to have an appropriate and detailed labelling. Further, each amenity or infrastructure should have appropriate labelling which can be used to create filters. Time and cost of transportation and housing have to be properly tabulated in a similar fashion. This information can then be used to create various kinds of queries to address various questions. GIS mapping holds a vast scope as any type and amount of data can be stored and analysed for a seamless functioning of the market.

Overall, this technological intelligence can be conveniently used to reposition or transform an area by recognising the available and required facilities. With GIS mapping taking Indian cities by a storm, the country definitely is on its way to a transparent and credible business functioning driven by digitisation.