On Digital Skills in Design, Real Estate and Construction – Imagining and Building Future Communities and Cities


Image Credit: holo-blok

FutureCite Exclusive interview 1of 8 with Roddy Handa of holo-blok.

How using digital technology can empower citizens to visualize and better understand planning and building projects proposed in their communities. FutureCite chats behind the scenes with Roddy Handa of Holo-Blok on the value of 3D Visualization tools, and DPD digital project development tools, and how they are using it in one of their projects, the Wedge, a novel highrise infill project in downtown Edmonton Alberta.


How do 3D digital visualization tools, or DPD, enable the communities to visualize and better understand the benefits and value as additions or changes to their community landscape?

Roddy Handa:

So, in answering the first part of your question, 3D visualization tools, and DPD, are not synonymous. DPD is the process of delivering a project through digital means, and one of those means is 3D visualization tools. So I’d say there’s a lot more to DPD than there is to 3D visualization. Like, 3D visualization is part of DPD, but they’re not synonymous. I would say what 3D visualization allows people to do is truly understand a project beyond traditional drawing literacy, which a lot of people don’t possess. So it allows people to appreciate the spatial relationship of a project and truly start to appreciate how it works with the surrounding context beyond traditional elevations or line drawings. It also allows people to, now, in this age, physically walk through a project using virtual reality, or beyond that, using augmented reality to really appreciate a design within a real, physical space before it’s constructed. You said something about landscape?


Yes, how do digital visualization tools enable communities to better understand the benefits and value as additions or changes to their community landscape?

Roddy Handa:

Well, I think when you can visualize it without any sort of sophistication or technical literacy you get stakeholder engagement beyond professionals, and you can get the lay person to really understand what a project’s doing in their back yard, or down the street from them. And that wasn’t possible before, where you were dealing with line drawings and hand drawings, where you kind of had to interpret things like massing, interpret things like depth of a project. Now all that’s kind of second nature, it’s how you would actually experience it, rather than imagining how you experience it.


About Roddy Handa

Roddy Handa is a lawyer, architect, problem solver, and a partner at Holo-Blok Architecture, an Edmonton based architecture and construction technology service company.  Roddy is the Vice Chair of aceBIM and serves on many civic committees that deal with the construction industry.


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