Verified View for Planning and Public Consultation

Verified Views

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A verified view is a highly accurate architectural visualisation method increasingly used to support planning applications. Using this methodology, CGI renderings are blended with photography to show proposed structures in exact scale and position within the existing landscape. Supporting information and written methodology are provided to confirm the accuracy of each image.

Verified views can be produced to various levels: In its simplest form, the image may only show the mass and position of the proposed building as a shadow overlay or outline on the photograph.

When required, the visibility of the proposal can be shown by obscuring those areas where it will be hidden by existing features of the built or natural environment.

Ultimately, fine detailing of the 3D model, application of realistic materials and accurate simulation of daylight conditions can all be employed to create a sophisticated photo-realistic image that is accurate in scale, position, and detail.

What are the Benefits of Verified Views?

Use of this established methodology ensures that a proposed development is shown to precise scale and detail.

The high level of detail and accuracy of scale, position and visibility is especially useful for urban planning. City planners can use architectural visualisation through every step of the planning process. It can be used to get the approval of all stakeholders–from the general public to local authorities. Verified views can be used to visualise at any scale, from national infrastructure to small town housing projects.

Property developers can increase sales and customer satisfaction by showing customers what their homes will actually look like under the light of day, and not just through polished photomontages.

Lastly, verified views enable more ambitious but practical creativity, allowing you to get faster and more precise feedback on the feasibility of your designs without investing too heavily in rendered CGI images. You can even test different colours and materials and see the impact of the changes against a real-world landscape.


For sensitive planning applications, a Verified View may be required to ensure the accuracy of a CGI’s size and angle relative to a contextual photograph. On-site, we shoot and survey the area using a calibrated measuring device and record the camera’s absolute GPS position. As well as the images required, a Verified View is delivered with a comprehensive method statement.

Verified View (VVM), otherwise know as an Accurate View Representation (AVR), Verified Montage or simply Planning CGI is offered at different levels, depending on requirement.


A Level 00 VVM shows a basic outline of the mass of the proposed development within the context of a photograph. Useful for ascertaining scale and position, this is helpful as part of an outline planning application and the most modestly priced Verified View Service.


A Level 01 Verified view takes into account the visibility of the proposal in relation to the camera position, removing areas obscured by other buildings, trees, landscape or other objects. This gives a more complete idea of the positioning of the building relative to the background and foreground. This is widely used for visual impact assessment.


A Level 02 VVM jumps ahead in terms of realism, showing the architectural detail of the proposal. Using the camera’s metadata for date and time, the Geographic coordinates of the proposal and the North direction, we simulate the precise sun intensity, height and direction of the photograph.


A Level 03 Verified View steps up in realism again, adding photo realistic materials, reflections and where obvious, interior detailing. This is suitable for sensitive planning applications where it is paramount to ensure the proposal is exemplified by the CGI.


For when the view is also suitable for marketing, a Level 04 adds even more detail such as extra people, cars, planting and interior fixtures, fittings and furniture to give the building a sense of life and function.


To create verified views, designers first create a real-world scale 3D model from the architect’s drawings. We’ll ask you to list your desired reference points around the site. We will then take professional photographs from these points, taking care to get the correct positioning relative to the subject. Elevation and focal length of the lens are recorded at this stage.

A laser survey is then performed for each camera position enabling the camera positions to be replicated within the 3D software. Where necessary, materials and lighting are added to the 3D scene and images of the 3D model are then produced using the virtual cameras, which will simulate real-world views of the proposal.

Using photo editing software, each CG image is then composited with its corresponding photograph to show the proposal in-situ.

  • Key views are ascertained with the client and a detailed 3D model of the proposal is created from digital 2D or 3D CAD data.
  • On site, we capture the necessary photography and also laser survey information of key contextual points.
  • Back in the studio, using the data captured on-site, the real-world lens position and orientation are precisely simulated in our 3D software
  • A contextual 3D model is created from survey data captured on-site cross referenced with ordnance survey data. This is combined with the photograph to confirm accuracy.
  • Where Level 02 or above, daylight is simulated to match geographical location, time, date and the weather conditions of the original photograph
  • Where Level 03 or above, materials are faithfully recreated for realism.
  • Drafts are sent to the client for approval and once signed off for accuracy, images can be developed to Level 04.



We create architectural 3D models with physically accurate materials. These can also include 3D cars, trees and planting. These are then rendered and post processed for colour correction and to add details such as people.


Using your plans, we create detailed architectural 3D models and use your material schedules, lighting plans and interior designs to create photo-realistic interior renders. We can even model up bespoke furnishings and fittings.


For sensitive planning applications, you may need to show your development in context of a photograph. Using real-world survey / scanning techniques, we can demonstrate accuracy of the image(s) in your submission.


Using photography taken by us or supplied by you, we can match the CGI lighting and position to the source photography. Once rendered, we mask areas of the CGI to create a convincing re-imagined photograph.


For marketing, fundraising or public consultation, a fly-through animation can communicate an entire development’s scale, design and function. This can also include music, graphics and credits or be included in an overall video presentation.


We render 360° panoramas of richly detailed 3D scenes. These can then be used with 3rd party applications / plugins to create ‘street-view’ style dynamic images. These can also be rendered in stereo for use with VR headsets.