Jamaica: The Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change has officially launched and commissioned its virtual reference station (VRS) network, gFIX.net, which is expected to revolutionise the surveying and construction sectors.
This will effectively reduce production time, as well as the cost of cadastral surveying, portfolio Minister, Hon. Robert Pickersgill said.
He was speaking at the launch and handing over of the system by the Ministry’s Spatial Management Division, to the National Land Agency (NLA), at the Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston.
Lauding the network, which will be utilised by the Land Administration and Management Programme (LAMP), Minister Pickersgill said the technology “has great potential for surveyors, planners, business persons, academics and policy makers”.
It will be utilised for surveying; urban and municipal mapping; land information management and maintenance of the titling cadastres; the preparation of development plans, and the facilitation of the development approval process; road maintenance; navigation, vehicle location tracking; environmental management, and community development; and hazard mitigation management.
Pickersgill noted that LAMP II is already utilising gFIX.net in land titling and registration, and cadastral surveying activities in the parishes of Clarendon, Manchester, and St. Elizabeth.
The $33 million network, which was established by Spatial Innovation Limited, is a new technology, which provides a more accurate means of collecting and processing geo-spatial data, which is helpful to surveyors, developers, planners and the government.
It is an integrated system of GPS, which uses data from a network of fixed reference stations to model errors near surveying locations. This data is then relayed to a roving receiver, and used to improve the accuracy of reading in a particular area.
The gFIX.net comprises 13 high precision global navigation satellite systems, which are strategically placed across the island to facilitate the accurate collection of data.
Pickersgill said such critical geospatial data is very beneficial to the administration’s commitment to focus on, and encourage more land owners to secure titles for their properties.
“At present, persons within the lower socio-economic stratum cannot afford the cost to survey their land for the purpose of registration. We aim to change this with the commissioning of gFIX.net,” the Minister assured.