Special Issue "Research and Development Progress in 3D Cadastral Systems"

A special issue of ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information (ISSN 2220-9964).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2017

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr.ir. Peter van Oosterom

Section GIS technology, Department OTB Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology, Julianalaan 134, 2628 BL Delft, The Netherlands
Website | E-Mail
Interests: spatial databases (3D, performance, constraints, temporal, …); GIS architectures; spatial analysis; generalization; vario-scale; 5D modeling; querying and presentation; internet/interoperable GIS and (3D) cadastral applications
Guest Editor
Assoc. Prof. Efi Dimopoulou

School of Rural and Surveying Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Iroon Polytechneiou, 9, Athens 15780, Greece
Interests: cadastre; spatial information management; land policy; GIS; 3D cadastres and cadastral modelling

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue is devoted to all aspects of 3D Cadastres: legal, organization, and technical aspects. This is a subject where practice and research do meet, influence, stimulate and support each other. The Special Issue aims for papers showing the progress in key areas of 3D Cadastres: Legal framework 3D Cadastres, Initial registration of 3D parcels, 3D data management, Visualization, distribution and delivery of 3D parcels.

The increasing complexity of infrastructures and densely built-up areas requires a proper registration of the legal status (private and public), which can only be provided to a limited extent by the existing 2D cadastral registrations. The registration of the legal status in complex 3D situations will be investigated under the header of 3D Cadastres. Typical papers are expected to addresses the following 3D Cadastral topics:

  • 3D Cadastre operational experiences (analysis, LADM based, learn from each other, discover gaps)
  • 3D Cadastre cost effective work flow for new/updated 3D parcels = 4D (part of whole chain: from planning/design/permit in 3D, to registration/use in 3D)
  • 3D Cadastre web-based dissemination (usability, man-machine interfaces, including mobile/AR)
  • Legal aspects for 3D Cadastre, best legal practises in various legislation systems
  • Focus on large cities, including developing countries

You are cordially invited to submit your 3D Cadastre contribution to this special issue.

Prof. Dr.ir. Peter van Oosterom
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dimopoulou
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • 3D cadastres
  • spatial databases
  • geographic information systems,
  • survey plans
  • 3D visualization
  • rights, restrictions, responsibilities
  • standardization
  • spatial data infrastructure
  • real property
  • utility networks

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle A Country Profile of the Czech Republic Based on an LADM for the Development of a 3D Cadastre
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2017, 6(5), 143; doi:10.3390/ijgi6050143
Received: 24 February 2017 / Revised: 27 April 2017 / Accepted: 28 April 2017 / Published: 3 May 2017
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The paper presents a country profile for the cadastre of the Czech Republic based on the ISO 19152:2012 Land Administration Domain Model (LADM). The proposed profile consists of both legal and spatial components and represents an important driving force with which to develop
[...] Read more.
The paper presents a country profile for the cadastre of the Czech Republic based on the ISO 19152:2012 Land Administration Domain Model (LADM). The proposed profile consists of both legal and spatial components and represents an important driving force with which to develop a 3D cadastre for the Czech Republic, which can guide the Strategy for the Development of the Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the Czech Republic to 2020. This government initiative emphasizes the creation of the National Set of Spatial Objects, which is defined as the source of guaranteed and reference 3D geographic data at the highest possible level of detail covering the entire territory of the Czech Republic. This can also be a potential source of data for the 3D cadastre. The abstract test suite stated in ISO 19152:2012—Annex A (Abstract Test Suite) and the LADM conformance requirements were applied in order to explore the conformity of the Czech country profile with this international standard. To test their conformity, a mapping of elements between the LADM and the tested country profile was conducted. The profile is conformant with the LADM at Level 2 (medium level) and can be further modified, especially when legislation is updated with respect to 3D real estate in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research and Development Progress in 3D Cadastral Systems)

Figure 1

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Comparative study of 3D real property concepts
 Jesper Paasch, Jenny Paulsson, Gerhard Navratil, Nikola Vucic, Dimitrios Kitsakis, Diego Erba, Marcin Karabin and Mohamed El-Mekavy
The concepts of three-dimensional (3D) real property have been the subject of increased interests in land use management and research during the last decade. There are several countries already implementing 3D cadastres. Among the first countries were the Netherlands and Australia where there are numerous publications on their development. However, in most cases the legal aspects of 3D real property and its incorporation of 3D cadastral systems have not been so rigorously examined. This paper compares and discusses 3D property concepts in selected countries. These countries have been selected as examples from own country’s experiences of the authors.

Despite that the examined countries are all based on Civil Law, they are on different stages of introducing and implementing the 3D cadastral systems, which could contribute to the detection of the main 3D real property concepts that apply as well as deficiencies and malfunctions that prohibit introduction of 3D cadastral systems. The examples in this paper shall therefore highlight challenges that may have not yet surfaced. The aim was to provide information concerning the following questions: What was the reason to introduce a 3D system or why would it be necessary?; What is the current status?; What is the legal definition of 3D objects and what are the possibilities for delimitations? and What types of rights can be registered in 3D?

The paper continues the legal framework discussions of the 4th international workshop on 3D cadastres in Dubai 2014 by analysing the legal concepts of 3D cadastres.The outcome is an overview and discussion of existing concepts of 3D property describing their similarities and differences and use, focusing on the legal framework of 3D cadastres. The concluding part of this article presents a possible way forward and identifies what further research is needed. This can then be used to draft national and international research proposals.

Title: Initial registration of 3D Parcels
 Efi Dimopoulou, Sudarshan Karki, Roic Miodrag, Jose-Paulo Duarte de Almeida, Griffith-Charles Charisse, Rod Thompson, Shaoqing Shen and Peter van Oosterom
Registering the rights of a 3D parcel provides certainty of ownership, protection of rights and unambiguous spatial location. While not all cadastral jurisdictions in the world maintain a digital cadastral database, the concepts of such registration hold true regardless of whether it is a paper-based cadastre or a digital one. Similarly, the motivations and purpose for the creation of a 2D cadastre for individual jurisdictions hold true for 3D cadastre as well. It provides a security of ownership of 3D parcel, protects the rights of the owners, and provides valuable financial instruments such as mortgage, collateral, valuation and taxation. Owners of such 3D property have rights that are important enough for the jurisdictions to consider a further investment towards the modification of their cadastral systems to accommodate the current market push towards 3D cadastre.

The current life cycle of the development of a parcel of land includes processes beginning from outside the cadastral registration sphere such as zoning plans and permits, but has a direct impact on how a certain development application is processed. Thus, in considering the changes required to allow a jurisdiction to register 3D, it is important to note the sphere of influence that could have an impact on 3D registration. These include planners, surveyors, data management and the registrars; however for the purpose of this paper, the discussions are focused on the core 3D aspects that are institutional, legal and technical issues. This paper presents an inventory of the current procedures of registration of 3D parcels in various countries. The various sources of 3D data are described and analysed in the context of 3D cadastres.

Title: Formalizing implementable constraints in the INTERLIS language for modelling 3D legal RRR spaces and 3D physical objects
 Eftychia Kalogianni, Efi Dimopoulou, Wilko Quak and Peter van Oosterom
This paper explores possibilities of linking 3D legal RRR spaces modelled with LADM (ISO 19152) with physical reality of 3D objects (CityGML or IFC). The models described with Unified Modelling Language (UML) diagrams, especially the constraints in OCL (Object Constraint Language) cannot be automatically converted into implementations.

Therefore, the model is first converted into the INTERLIS modelling language, in order to be formally expressed including various constraints in a platform/ vendor neutral manner. Next, INTERLIS tools are used to automatically generate implementation components for specific environments; e.g. database schema or exchange file format. Challenges among others include: how to express the various LADM constraints (OCL and semi-formal in standard) formally in INTERLIS, how to include extensible hierarchical code lists in INTERLIS models (not natively available), how to model 3D volumetric primitives in INTERLIS (not natively available), how to link two models (legal - physical) using cross domain constraints, etc.

The system’s development cycle, from conceptual model to implementation of working prototype is illustrated with a proposed model for multipurpose land administration system (MLAS) in Greece. This model includes several types of objects and interests that are not currently registered by the Hellenic Cadastre, such as utility networks (both the legal and their physical counterpart), planning zones, marine parcels and 3D (land) parcels. The proposed model aims to establish an appropriate basis for the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) of Greece. The prototype is developed in order to evaluate the strengths and limitations of the proposed model (linking legal and physical objects), as well as to investigate the efficiency and limitations of the existing technological (INTERLIS) tools.

Title: Representation of all condominiums through a 3D cadastre within the national territory of Costa Rica
 Andres Hernandez Bolaños
With the development of cities and condominium law the two-dimensional (2D) cadastral model no longer has the ability to properly locate the rights of a person on, for example, a vertical condominium. The National Registry and more specifically the Land Real Estate Registry has taken the initiative to investigate the development a three dimensional (3D) cadastral proposal. The property is a fundamental right in Costa Rica, where today vertical development is very important. The 3D volume definition in the Law on Land Registry is not obvious, and even though in most of the countries in the region property legislation mentions 3D, in practice it is rendered in 2D cadastral maps.

A 3D cadastre should be able to store, manipulate, query, analyze, update and view 3D cadastral objects using a Geographic Information System. In Costa Rica the National Register Act No. 6545 of 1981 states that the cadastral map is the graphical, numerical and literal representation and statistics of all lands within the national territory. The project of a 3D cadastre within the Property Real Estate Registry poses a graphics processing methodology in order to develop a cadastral map in three dimensions using a Geographic Information System (GIS) to represent graphical, numerical and literal way all condominiums within the national territory.

Title: LandXML encodig of mixed 2D and 3D Survey Plans with Topology.
 Rod Thompson
In many jurisdictions the cadastral survey plan is a critical instrument in the administration of property rights, being the point of truth that defines the extent and location of the property. With the growing trend towards digital submission of cadastral plans, there is a need to maintain the authoritative nature of the plan in the absence of a paper document. The secondary purpose of such a (digital) plan is as a data source for a database (and map) of cadastral property information. In a modern cadastre, there is need to ensure that the definitions of properties are correct and non-overlapping in 2D and 3D extent, and that adjoining properties are correctly identified in 3D.
This paper explores the practicality of encoding cadastral spatial units in a way that highlights their 2D extent (as typically represented on maps, survey plans and existing cadastral databases), and fully defines their extent in the third dimension. The suggested method uses a form of mixed-dimensional topographic encoding (sharing surface and edge definitions between adjoining spatial units) that is simple and efficient in space requirements. It prevents (or warns of) problems of overlap and encroachment between spatial units in 3D, while providing a data source for a mixed 2D / 3D digital cadastral database. This paper discusses the expression of this encoding in LandXML and alternatives, and further considers using the same model for the storage of 2D/3D spatial units in a cadastral database. The issue of curved surfaces is discussed.

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