Digital Twin City


Cities are growing and becoming denser day by day, in that it’s being difficult to avail resources to a better livelihood. This is because the rate of migration from rural to urban areas is increasing across the world. By 2050, around 70% of the people will be living in cities and India is no exception in this regard. So there is emerging need for cities to get smarter in India. Cities must be smart enough to manage the resources.

We bring leverage technology to remodel the city across several limitations as we cannot change the entire city but we can the way we use the city. Smart City stands to leverage technology to serve people, it applies to several sectors of development basically depending on the level of development, willingness to change and reform, resources, and aspirations of the city.

A digital city model of the existing city can be used as a better way to analyze the city for its best uses. We can actually feel the city with a virtual tour and identify the problems and solution for it. In our case study, we have used 3DEXPERIENCE Platform to design the city with the help of available open sources satellite data such as SRTM, Google, and OpenStreetMap.

Keywords: Smart City; Livelihood; Urban; Migration; Engineering; Technology; Development; 3DEXPERIENCE Platform; Model city.


To provide the aspirations and needs of the citizens, urban planners ideally aim at developing the entire urban eco-system, which is represented by the four pillars of comprehensive development-institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructure. This can be a long-term goal and cities can work towards developing such comprehensive infrastructure incrementally, adding on layers of ‘smartness’.

Smart City: It can be defined as leverage technology to serve people, it applies to several sectors of development basically depending on the level of development, willingness to change and reform, resources, and aspirations of the city. So there is no universally accepted definition of a smart city, it varies from city to city and country to country. Therefore, a city has to be designed to optimize resources and to promote sound sustainable development. The first step comes to the planning of smart city is infrastructure. An infrastructure which has the capacity to accommodate an exceeding number of people, which transforms the movement of traffic rapidly, which allows industries for better production and where citizen communicates actively, which improves the quality of life through experiences to use the city.

This document state the art of utilization of 3D model city across multiple domains. This will also facilitate several external sources which are useful in making a Digital Twin City. To better plan for the future, we need to rethink how we can imagine, plan, design, analyze, simulate, build and manage the city. India needs to improve elementary education to move ahead in the digital era.


3D Modeling Apps

The application allows the full definition of construction projects. The broad-based collaborative framework enables commercial architects, planners, and clients to make the building real before it’s built. The user can design any geometry, in solid and surface, Get a very accurate 3D fully parametric CATIA native geometry, Generative 2D drawings, 2D layout for 3D design, Normal, and Large Range, Design Review, Interference checking, Terrain Modeling.

CATIA civil module is a complete solution to all types of civil design, a small training required for the user to be familiar with the several apps such as terrain preparation, building space planning, civil 3D design, and CATIA civil engineering. With the terrain preparation map facilitate terrain design, we can actually differentiate different elevation. Also, we can define the contour lines for the selected area. It also facilitates to mess the terrain so that buildings and existing structure can be placed in the geolocated place.

Fig-1 3D Experience Platform Dashboard

The dashboard contains a list of tasks, apps 3D Search and 6WTags, Me Menu, New Menu, Share Menu and home Home Menue.

Terrain Preparation:

The downloaded data from earth explorer can be imported into the software through CATIA terrain preparation app which facilitates terrain modeling, study area can be selected and projected from the large terrain. After meshing, the terrain a contour can be prepared with fixed elevation differences.Adequate terrain administration is in general interest of the society, and it is also significant from viewpoint of clients who invest in construction. In most of the countries, particularly those in transition, investors wishing to invest into construction often face a series of difficulties and problems during the process of acquiring all required grants and construction permits. There are several kinds of data which can be used as input to terrain preparation apps, such as SRTM, LiDAR, and DEM. Open source data SRTM which have 30m of resolution mostly used. The stand rudd SRTM data format is .hgt which is considered as raw SRTM data. The Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) is an international research effort that obtained digital elevation models on a near-global scale from 56° S to 60° N, to generate the most complete high-resolution digital topographic database of Earth prior to the release of the ASTER GDEM in 2009.  

OpenStreetMap(OSM) is a collaborative project to create a free editable map of the world. The creation and growth of OSM have been motivated by restrictions on use or availability of map information across much of the world, and the advent of inexpensive portable satellite navigation devices. OSM is considered a prominent example of volunteered geographic information.

Imported 3D buildings from OSM are a box-like structure which can be converted into building with the predefine0d story. The imported line can be converted into roads, Generative Shape Development App facilitate key tools to design road. Before that, it is important to gather information about existing road such as the width of the road, no of lane, shoulders, parking e.t.c. OSM map can be directly imported into the Building space planning app, for the most of the reason map have 3D information such as the height of the building so while importing a selection of 3D can be made by checking import 3D option in the toolbox. Sometimes OSM does not have height information so in this case, we can get the 2D layout of all the existing structure. The 2D layout can be modified to 3D in the Building Space planning app.

Most of the information can be stored from google earth view also, satellite top view footage can be directly applied to the texture of the terrain to bring the realistic view to the project. Given picture describe imported 3D OSM building. 

CATIA Building Space Planning App:

After terrain modeling, CATIA building planning application is being used for the geolocation of existing building from OpenStreetMap (OSM). CATIA building planning app facilitates multi-story building designs with faster and easy way as per architecture oriented.

Boxes can be converted into buildings and geolocated with the respective place. CATIA live rendering app facilitates material analysis, it allows the user to apply the material to the structure for analysis purpose. It also allows the user to apply a texture to the buildings which result in realistic view.

The complete model City:

Poor infrastructure impedes economic growth, in order to stimulate growth and reduce poverty, it is essential to improve the supply, quality, and affordability of infrastructure services. Since several years our cities are not being changed, the world population is excepted to grow from 7 billion in 2011 to over 9 billion in 2050. So we really gonna have to think about how we can design new technologies for the city into different ways, so there is two-way solve the problems of the cities; to optimize the systems another to bring the behavioral changes. A model city helps to study this area for structural changes.  A possible way to real-time simulation with digital twin city can address various domain solution for infrastructure development.


More people are now living in urban areas than the country for the first time and we need to build several new cities in the next 30 years. This put immense pressure on all areas of daily life: water, air, food, energy, space, and safety.

3D models are the 1st steps toward fulfillment of smart cities; if we imagine, simulate & experience cities for the people then we can create lively, safe, sustainable, and healthy cities.

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