Planning for buildings, urban development and infrastructure is set to be transformed over the next two years in New South Wales as the state is set to receive its first state-wide digital twin.

In his latest announcement, NSW Minister for Digital and Customer Service Victor Dominello says a digital twin which currently covers eight pilot locations will be expanded over the next two years to create a digital replica of the entire state.

Known as the NSW Spatial Digital Twin, this will bring together data sources from across government including spatial, natural resources and planning.

These will be integrated with real time feeds from sensors to provide insights for planners, designers and decision makers.

The twin will provide 4D information, which combines the 3D representation of data along with changes over time.

This will enable users to analyse historical situations and model future scenarios.

This specialist is using the NSW Spatial Digital Twin to review flood levels as indicated in green (image: screenshot from video provided)

The twin will provide and facilitate:

  • Display of information such as air quality and energy production in real time.
  • Digital delivery of planning, design, delivery and operation for engineering and construction projects
  • Readily available data for analytics, resource planning and service delivery
  • Data for city planning purposes such as flood mapping or utility operation
  • Opportunities for more widespread community engagement on building and infrastructure projects to be delivered in a manner which is easier, more intuitive and more transparent
  • Greater automation and certainty in compliance and approval projects.

The technology allows detailed 3D modelling that is accurate and visual. This imagery of Fort Denison can help monitor for changes in materials, such as stone cracks.

The original pilot program involved a rollout within eight high-growth local government areas.

These include the Blue Mountains, Camden, Campbelltown, Fairfield, Hawkesbury, Liverpool, Penrith and Wollondilly.

It will be rolled out across the entire state via a $40 million investment from the NSW Digital Restart Fund.

Data scientists can use the digital twin to map terrain and slopes. This advanced modelling could help emergency services during a fire.

Dominello said the importance of the twin should not be underestimated.

He says the existing twin has received 18 million requests for access over the past twelve months across the pilot locations.

The NSW Spatial Digital Twin also creates digital maps of complex interiors. This expert is modelling Jenolan Caves NSW to measure changes to sensitive environments.

“This investment will cement NSW’s position as the world leader when it comes to Spatial Digital Twin technology,” Dominello said.

“This digital architecture makes it possible to visualise a development digitally before it is physically built, making it easier to plan and predict outcomes of infrastructure projects, right down to viewing how shadows fall, or how much traffic is in an area.”

The detailed visuals can allow builders to see true 3D including underground infrastructure, saving time and lowering projects risks.

The digital twin forms part of a newly launched Live.NSW program, which will include development of a customer platform which will enable members of the community to search for information based on their needs and places of interest – such as local schools or proposed hospitals.

This will provide community members with information on which to base important life decisions, such as where to move based on local schools, school catchments or planned hospitals.

Advanced building models captured in the digital twin will allow stakeholders to see detailed interiors and exteriors in rear environments.



The foundation spatial data for the twin is being compiled from a location in regional NSW by an expert team within Spatial Services – a division of the NSW Department of Customer Service.


The NSW Spatial Digital Twin allows for 4D time modelling. Here, we see Camden land use today versus 20 years ago.

To transform this into a sophisticated viewing experience, Spatial Services is partnering with Data 61, a research network which sits within the CSIRO.