Underground Infrastructure Concept Development Study

For more information please contact innovation@ogc.org

This CDS Project is Complete – Pilot is underway

This Underground Concept Development Study (CDS) paved the way for an Underground Pilot.  The pilot will lead to verified, standards-based interoperability for ‘smarter’ underground projects in cities around the world 

Also see Bloomberg Businessweek article: Nobody Knows What Lies Beneath New York City


CDS Project Overview

The OGC Underground Infrastructure Concept Development Study will lead to improved public safety, project delivery and urban resilience from a secure 3D repository of urban underground infrastructure.  

OGC is greatful to the organizations that sponsored the Concept Development Study phase:



Prior Activities in the Underground Concept Development Study

The OGC Underground Infrastructure Concept Study Engineering Report is now published.

Contact George Percivall OGC (gpercivall at opengeospatial.org) for additional information.  
We are seeking sponsors future phases of the Underground Infrastructure project  


Underground CDS Workshop – April 2017

Workshop Scope focused on a limited set of topics: 

1) Applications and benefits; 2) Utility data models; 3) Underground environment including soils; and 4) Examples of data collection, integration and visualization/analysis. 

For the moment, discussion of information security, legal/liability issues, and financial/societal will be handled only as they arise in the focus topics..  The RFI describes the broader scope of the initiative. 

Expected outcomes for the workshop 

Workshop Sessions

Monday, April 24th 

Tuesday, April 25th 

See the Underground Workshop Prospectus for a listing of the presentations by session including topics and times


Workshop Presentations 


Session 1 – Opening, Introductions and Overview

Session Chair:  Alan Leidner

1.1 Welcome by FCNY – Alan Leidner  and Mary McCormick, FCNY

1.2 Underground Project overview and purpose – George Percivall, OGC 

Session 2 – Cities with Underground Projects

Session Chair: George Percivall

1. New York City Projects – Jim McConnell, NYC OEM and  Professor Sean Ahearn, Hunter College  (Sewer map – S. Ahearn)

2. Underground Geospatial Information Management in Singapore – Siau Yong NG, SLA

3. Belgium, the Flanders region – an introduction to KLIP – Jef Daems, Informatie Vlaanderen

4. UK Projects – Andy Ryan, Ordnance Survey

Session 3 – Underground information systems practices

Session Chair:  George Percivall

1. Underground Infrastructure Mapping in Chicago – Eric Bergstrom, HBK Engineering  and Boris Tsypin, Accenture

2. Underground Infrastructure Mapping: Common 3D asset database – Dave LaShell, Esri

3. Underground Infrastructure Mapping and Modeling: Use Cases and Data Models – Robert Mankowski, Bentley 

Session 4 – Underground Data models for integration and data sharing

Session Chair: Carsten Roensdorf

1. CityGML Utility Network ADE – Scope, Concepts, and Applications – Tatjana Kutzner and Thomas Kolbe, Technical University of Munich  – (Video: Underground Utilities in Munich)

2. Data models for underground utility networks – Sisi Zlatanova and Ben Gorte, Technical University Delft

3. IMKL and INSPIRE – Luc Van Linden, HL Consulting and Liesbeth Rombouts, AGIV

4. BSI PAS 256 – Les Guest

5. OGC LandInfra / InfraGML Standards for Infrastructure – Paul Scarponcini, Chair OGC Land and Infrastructure Standards Working Group

6. ASCE Utility information standards – Phil Meis, Chair of ASCE Committees

7. Voxels perspective for Underground Modeling – Ben Gorte and Sisi Zlatanova, Technical University of Delft

Session 5 – Underground Environment data model

Session Chair:  Josh Lieberman

1. Mapping Underground Soils in New York City – George Deodatis, Columbia University 

2. Towards a complete subsurface information system – Mickael Beaufils, BRGM

3. Underground environmental properties and processes  – Carl Watson, BGS

4. City Infrastructure Lifecycle Management: a platform approach – Ingeborg Rocker, Dassault 

Session 6 – Data collection, curation, and integration for visualization and analysis.

Session Chair:  Josh Lieberman

1. Utility Rediscovery from Field Investigation to 3D Model/BIM – Lapo Cozzutto,  Berenice and Phil Meis, UMS (Videos: GeoFeature, LAX Project

2. ‘Ground- truthing’ data from the scanning & sensing technologies – Boris Tsypin, Accenture

3. Geophysical techniques to infer underground structures and voids – Albert Boulanger, Columbia University 


Sessions 7 and 8 – Breakout session reports

Breakout session reports


Responses to the RFI –  March 2017 

26 Responses were received to the RFI. Responses came from: US, Europe, Asia; Government, Industry, Academia.  Responses will be used to plan the Workshop.

Accenture Bentley BGS
Boston City  BRGM Cesar Quiroga
CityGML Chair Dassault Systemes Delft University (Vector and Voxel)
Dubai Electricity and Water. EPRI Erik Stubkjaer
Geoweb 3D  HERE HL Consulting
KLIP Informatie Vlaanderen LandInfra SWG Les Guest Assoc.
Luciad Robin Danton Rotterdam City
WinCan Europe Ltd  Spacetime Technology St Paul Minnesota
Swiss Water SJIB Technics Group Technische Universität München
UMS Bernice    

Additional links are added as approved by the responding organization.


Request for Information (RFI) –  February 2017

13 February 2017: The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) is requesting information from interested parties to inform a Concept Development Study (CDS) that will assess the current state and future direction of information standards for modelling, mapping, and managing underground infrastructure.

The CDS will define the scope of a multi-phase underground infrastructure interoperability project. The purpose of the study is to develop an in-depth understanding of all the components necessary to enable infrastructure data interoperability and standards in an underground environment. The CDS is initially focused on the urban landscape, but is extendable. This Request for Information (RFI) is a first step in the CDS process. Any organization with an interest in underground infrastructure is invited to respond to the RFI before 15 March 2017.

Currently, the exchange of underground utility information between infrastructure organizations within the same jurisdiction or in adjacent jurisdictions has been greatly hampered by incompatible and incomplete data. OGC anticipates that this project will make a significant contribution towards facilitating improved information management and secure sharing and collaboration, which should make infrastructure planning, operations & maintenance, and emergency response less costly and time consuming, and more effective.

Instructions for submitting a response are detailed in the RFI, available at www.opengeospatial.org/standards/requests/155

Responses in electronic version can be submitted to the OGC Technology Desk (techdesk@opengeospatial.org), and are invited before 15 March 2017.

Project Initiation – January 2017

Press Release:  OGC initiates Phase 1 Development of Interoperability Standards for Underground Infrastructure Data

The Open Geospatial Consortiumhas begun a Concept Development Study on underground spatial modeling and analytics.

The underground infrastructure data interoperability project will take two and a half years to complete and will involve the collaboration of many cities, utilities, and engineering and technology companies. Useful and useable insights and techniques will start to emerge during the first year of this initiative.  

– Contact: George Percivall, OGC CTO (gpercivall at opengeospatial.org)

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