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Gov't pleased with increased use of geospatial technology locally

Friday, November 09, 2018

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THE Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation says it is pleased with the increased use of geospatial technology locally.

Acting chief technical director in the ministry Constance Trowers said that geographic information system (GIS) technology is being utilised in several sectors, particularly in traffic management and road infrastructure works.

“The National Works Agency (NWA) has been employing GIS for cost-effective design and road repair as well as river training. So, too, has the Jamaica Urban Transit Company in coordinating its buses on their routes and schedules,” she noted.

She said further that China Harbour Engineering Company “has extensively employed geospatial technologies in the planning, routing, monitoring, and maintenance of the various major corridor expansion projects currently being undertaken both within the Corporate Area and throughout Jamaica”.

Trowers was speaking at the 10th GIS Business Executive Forum, hosted by the National Spatial Data Management Division of the ministry, at the Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston on Tuesday.

She said that the ministry celebrates the gains made in the use of GIS and other geospatial technologies, and intends to use these as the foundation for greater benefits in the future, underscoring the ministry's commitment to economic growth.

“The benefits of geospatial technology are all-encompassing to all sectors of society with limitless potential. These technologies must be at the forefront of our efforts as we seek to forge stronger partnerships between Government, citizens and the private sector in initiatives that will yield significant mutual benefits,” she said.

Geospatial technology refers to all of the technology used to acquire, manipulate, and store geographic information. GIS is one form of geospatial technology. These technologies are used in the development of global positioning system (GPS) units, unmanned aerial vehicles (drones), satellite imagery, and vehicle navigation and tracking solutions, among others.

The forum was part of activities for National Geography Awareness Week under the theme 'Geospatial Technologies: Driving Logistics and Transportation'.

Other events include the sixth GIS Technical Seminar at the University of Technology, Jamaica on November 8; a thanksgiving service at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church on November 11; the 16th National GIS Day Exposition at The University of the West Indies; and a GIS Symposium at the Caribbean Maritime University on November 16.

The HEART Trust/NTA, the Caribbean Maritime University and The University of the West Indies have partnered with the ministry to mark Geography Awareness Week.

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