Geo Message (August 2011)

Inside SSSI




As you would have read in our last geomessage I was overseas attending the 25th  International Cartographic Conference in Paris  in the first week of July. After this I did some touring around Europe so I left all the jobs for others to do while I was away.


During this time  Kellee has been diligently working on the preparations for the Victorian Spatial Summit to be held on September 14th. All the sponsorship packages have been sold and we are working towards publishing the draft program for the day. Please consider registering as soon as possible – this will be a big day.  Also the evening Victorian Spatial Excellence awards will be a very popular event and I hope you are all considering attending this as it is the highlight of our social calendar.
Destination Spatial organised a number of attendances at career events during the month. These are listed below in the Destination spatial report.


To register go to or click here



Robyn McCutcheon

Victorian SSSI Chair 






Destination Spatial


At our last meeting Michael Gehling from Education Services Australia (ESA) presented the BETA version of a Spatial tool called SpatialGenie that is aimed at year 4 to 10 students.  It was an interesting presentation and DS has invited Michael to be part of the Committee.  Also we had some great news this month with GITA confirming a student Bursary.  They have asked DS to come up with the selection criteria for distribution of these funds. 


Events are going well with plenty of industry support and interest.   On the 25th of July Jane Edwards from SKM presented at the Sunshine Secondary College Careers Day and followed on with workshop for the students. The students really enjoyed the workshop and we have since received positive feedback from Sunshine Secondary College.  They enjoyed the presentation and felt that we had provided the students with a career option that many of them would not have considered.  


On the 26th and 27th of July George Havakis (SIBA Chair), Lyn Terrett (Rapid Map) and Lisa Cheong (Vic Police) exhibited and presented at the Hobsons Career Expo days.  These days were highly successful with the target audience being Career Advisors. The Career Advisors really liked the fact sheet and presented and commented that it was exactly what they needed.


On the 27th of July Jan Wandek and his team at Aussoft attended the Gippsland Career Expo.  Following this from the 29th to the 31st July Destination Spatial had an industry funded exhibit at the Herald Sun Career Expo.  This was another successful completely ran by industry volunteers.  We were able to generate plenty of interest in our industry. Thank you once again to all those who volunteered to assist over the 3 days.  Our exhibit booth was funded by AAM, Spatial Vision and SSSI.  The booth was attended to during the day by industry volunteers including one  of our newest SSSI members Amelia French from SKM, Lyn Terrett (RapidMap), Libby Hillman (GTAV), Sam Hillman (RMIT Spatial Student), Holly Voller (MFB), George Havakis (SIBA Chair), Glenn Cockerton (SIBA Treasurer), Callum McClure (AAM), Stuart Gordon(AAM), Mina Jahanshani and Rachel Lerm both from Spatial Vision.   Thank you all for your tremendous support and assistance with these events.


On the 7th August Libby Hillman from GTAV attended the GTAV VCE Student Lectures and distributed the Destination Spatial Fact Sheet, on the 8th to the 10th August Lyn Terrett, George Havakis and Ken Lyons from SSSI QLD held a workshop at GITA covering Skilling the Workforce and presented on the efforts and statistics derived from our Destination Spatial work for the Spatial industry.


Coming up we have the RMIT Open day on the 14th August 2011, Melbourne University Open Day 21st August 2011, GTAV Annual Conference on the 23rd Aug.  The Ballarat  Careers Expo on the 22nd August 2011 and the SSSI Education Summit on the 22 September 2011 SSSI.   


Land Surveying Commission Sub Committee


A meeting of the LSC Sub Committee and Cadastral & Land Development S.I.G was held on 20th July to further plan and develop a program of activities. The next meeting will be held on Wed 7th September, any LSC members are welcome to attend, please contact Kellee Ireland for more information.


Current Reviews include



New Regulations - Planning and Environment (Fees) and Subdivision Fees


The Planning & Environment (Fees) Interim Regulations 2011 and Subdivision (Fees) Interim Regulations 2011 came into effect on 24th July, 2011. They extend the operation of the previous regulations and rates to expire on 23/7/2012.


Surveying Taskforce Update


Michelle Brooks from the Surveying Taskforce Marketing Consultants has advised that the Surveying website - A Life Without Limits has received a makeover and has now been launched. The main changes to the site are the new homepage layout with 3 video testimonials and a new 6 tab navigation menu at the top of the page to make it more user friendly. There are also links from the homepage to the most searched for pages allowing for users to quickly find the most relevant information for them.  We encourage you all to visit the website, take a look around and let us know what you think - A Life Without Limits


Surveying has also joined the Facebook revolution. Come and “like” our Try Surveying page on Facebook to keep up-to-date with the latest industry news, and connect with fellow Surveyors. We will also be running a competition in a few weeks so come & “like” us now so you don’t miss out on the details of how to enter! Try Surveying Facebook Page.   Please contact Michelle if you have any questions about the website or Facebook page, or any suggestions on how they could be improved. SURVEYING TASK FORCE, T: 03 9326 8173, E:, W:


Download the latest Surveying Taskforce newsletter here









Proposed Changes to VPP Car Parking Provisions


The Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD) has announced that the Car Parking Advisory Committee is seeking public comment on draft changes to the car parking provisions of the Victoria Planning Provisions (VPP). Draft Clause 52.06.  A new Draft Clause 52.06 has been prepared, which includes changes to:



Draft Parking Overlay and Schedule


A new Parking Overlay and associated Schedule template have been developed, with the proposed overlay to "allow local variations to the standard provisions in Clause 52.06 where strategically justified". Planning authorities will be able to use the overlay to:



Comments on the draft clause 52.06 and parking overlay should be sent to the Car Parking Advisory Committee, c/- Planning Panels Victoria, Level 1, 8 Nicholson Street, East Melbourne 3002 by 7 October 2011.  Further information from the DPCD (Source: DPCD)


Wodonga to be first new project for Urban Renewal Authority


The newly established Victorian Urban Renewal Authority will take over plans for a development project at Wodonga.  Planning Minister Matthew Guy announced that central Wodonga will be greatly revitalised by the project to be delivered by the Urban Renewal Authority, its first new project.
The project and subject land is currently controlled by VicTrack but Mr Guy said he has written to the Minister for Public Transport to commence the necessary arrangements to transfer control to the Urban Renewal Authority as soon as possible. According to the government, the draft development plan for the central Wodonga site includes:



Mr Guy said.”The new Urban Renewal Authority will draw heavily on VicTrack's work to date and its draft development plan, which provides a foundation for planning for the city's future commercial and community development. A Project Director from VicTrack will be assigned to the Urban Renewal Authority to ensure a smooth transition and to enable continuous liaison with the City of Wodonga and the community."


The Urban Renewal Authority was first announced by the Coalition during last year's state election with an aim to stimulate urban renewal and development and the Victorian Urban Development Authority Amendment (Urban Renewal Authority Victoria) Bill 2011 was passed by Parliament last month, allowing for the establishment of the new authority, which replaces Vic Urban.  In Melbourne, E-Gate (West Melbourne), Richmond Station and Fisherman’s Bend have been identified as potential urban renewal areas.


Benchmarking Study of Regulation by Local Governments


The Productivity Commission has released the Terms of reference (ToR) for its research study "to benchmark the extent to which particular approaches to the exercise of regulatory responsibilities by local government authorities", including in relation to planning, zoning, development and environmental assessment, "affect costs incurred by business, both within and between jurisdictions".


Among other things, the Commission has been directed by Assistant Treasurer Bill Shorten to identify "whether particular approaches to the exercise of regulatory roles by local government have the capacity to reduce unnecessary costs incurred by business while sustaining good regulatory outcomes".  Further information from the Productivity Commission (Source: Productivity Commission).


Panel appointed on constitutional recognition of local government


On August 8th last, the Australian Government appointed an independent expert panel to progress the recognition of local government in the Australian Constitution. The panel, to be led by former Chief Justice of the NSW Supreme Court, the Honourable James Spigelman, will comprise representatives from a range of backgrounds and areas of expertise. Minister for Local Government, Simon Crean, said the panel will consult with stakeholder groups and the community on options for recognising local government in the Constitution.


In coming to office, Prime Minister Julia Gillard agreed to a referendum on constitutional recognition of local government by 2013, making agreements with the Greens and Independent MPs Tony Windsor and Andrew Wilkie. The panel will report back to government by the end of the year.
The government said it is committed to holding a national referendum on the issue during the term of the current government or at the next election. Mr Crean said “The Gillard Government is progressing the issue of recognising local government in the Constitution and this is a commitment that successive Labor governments have never wavered from".


CPSISC Industry Skills Shortages Report 2011


The Construction & Property Services Industry Skills Council (CPSISC) Industry Skills Shortages Report 2011 has just been released and confirms that there is still a strong demand for qualified surveying professionals largely due to growth in the civil and commercial construction sectors and mining. Queensland and WA indicate shortages, particularly in cadastral surveying.


ACSM Congress disbanded


Last week in the USA it was moved that in the interests of leading towards a viable single organization, the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) be disbanded and in conjunction with the process, ACSM turn over all operation, control, assets and liabilities to the National Society of Professional Surveyors( NSPS), and that the NSPS immediately proceed with a realignment into a unified organization made up of individual members with equitable representation that encompasses the broader definition of surveying to include members of ACSM,NSPS, American Association for Geodetic Surveying (AAGS)  and Geographic and Land Information society (GLIS).


Transit of Venus Project 2012


Transits of Venus across the disc of the sun are amongst the rarest of the planetary alignments. Since the invention of the telescope, transits have occurred in 1631,1639,1761,1769,1874,1882 and 2004. The next one will be in June,2012 and the following ones will not occur until Dec 2117 and Dec 2115.


Astronomer Edward Halley realised that the Transit of Venus could be used to measure the distance between the earth and the sun (i.e 1 astronomical unit) and thus compute the scale of the solar system.


Surveyors have traditionally been involved in previous measuring campaigns and the observations by Captain Cook at Tahiti in 1769 ultimately led to the charting of the east coast of Australia and the British settlement of our country.


The transit on 6th June 2012 will be visible from Alaska, North West North America, Japan, Korea, Eastern China, Philippines, Eastern Australia and New Zealand.


The previous Transit of Venus generated a lot of interest in Europe, so it is proposed to carry out a number of combined activities by surveyors and other spatial professionals, astronomers, history, geography, science and mathematics teachers, to stimulate further interest in maths history, geography and subsequently an interest in the spatial sciences.


A national SSSI Transit of Venus steering committee has been formed based in Queensland, but membership is also made up of representatives from other States.
The Committee office holders include:-



Lindsay Perry has been co-opted to co-ordinate the Victorian end, but is seeking assistance from other interested individuals.


The Project aims to provide a live website viewing platform to observe the transit, provide live observation data and make appropriate calculations and compare it with previous calculations.  There will be observers at various sites around the Pacific and Alaska. There is an instrument called the Solarscope which allows safe and convenient viewing of the Transit and will be made available to as many interested schools as possible. However these units cost around $150 and funding support will be required to assist interested schools in obtaining a Solarscope.


The Transit of Venus Steering Committee meets regularly by Teleconference. A funding proposal has been lodged with the SSSI Board and financial assistance may also be sought from industry groups including those in Victoria.


The current strategies of the Steering Committee include:-



This is an important opportunity to promote surveying and the spatial sciences to the community and future students. We seek the help of anyone who is willing to assist in this project, if anyone would like to assist or find out more about the project, please contact Kellee Ireland otherwise keep watching GeoNews for regular updates.


Second GPS Block II-F Satellite Successfully Launched July 18, 2011



The U.S. Air Force successfully launched GPS IIF-2 Space Vehicle Number (SVN) 63 carried aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Medium rocket at 2:41 a.m. EDT July 16 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. This is the second in the series of 12 GPS satellites that Boeing has on contract with the Air Force. Boeing, maker of the satellite, reports signals are being received.


The satellite will join the GPS constellation of 30 operational satellites on-orbit providing precise positioning, navigation and timing services to users worldwide. SVN-63 will assume plane D, slot 2A position replacing SVN-24 after nearly 20 years of service. The satellite is expected to be available for navigation users worldwide next month.


The GPS IIF satellites will provide greater navigation accuracy to users through improvements in atomic clock technology and a more robust signal for commercial aviation and safety-of-life applications, known as the third civil signal (L5). Along with new and improved signals GPS IIF will have a longer design life of 12 years providing long-term service and reduced operating costs. GPS IIF will also continue to deploy the modernized capabilities that began with the modernized GPS IIR satellites, including a more robust military signal.


Another Beidou/Compass Satellite Launched July 26, 2011


The China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology is also reporting the successful launch of another satellite in the Beidou/Compass navigation system. According to the report, this is the fourth inclined geosynchronous orbit (IGSO) satellite launched. The first IGSO was launched October 31, 2010.
Plans call for completion of a 14-satellite constellation by 2012. The constellation would consist of five geostationary or GEO, five IGSO, and four medium-Earth orbit satellites, to provide a regional service over eastern Asia. Long-range plans envision a 35-satellite constellation providing global service by 2020: 27 MEO, 3 IGSO, and 5 GEO (courtesy of CANSPACE Listserv).




Download the latest SRBV Newsletter here.







Recent Events



3 August 2011 - Changing Paradigm


The following FPET points were allocated to the SSSI event held on 3/08/2011:



29 July 2011 - Changes Before our Eyes - Postponed to 7th October 2011

All Seasons - Bendigo


18 July 2011 - State Library Map Room Tour



Upcoming Events



GIS Program Management Workshop - 13 September 2011


Sebel Hotel Albert Park.  65 Queen Road, Albert Park


Time: 9am to 5pm


Guest Speaker Dr Peter Woodgate (CEO of CRC for Spatial Information) will present on Governance & Best Practice - How to get it right and pitfalls to avoid.


Today, most government organisations and a growing number of private industries have some type of GIS program in place. They vary from being in their early stages, to the rebuilding or tuning-up phase, to being completed and changed as new technologies and applications emerge. This workshop is designed to provide guidelines for managing your GIS program. It will look at the various organisational and technical issues program managers must address in order to develop a successful GIS program.


The discussions will include managing key aspects of a GIS program from staffing and budgeting to procuring technology and working with vendors. A variety of real world examples will be presented showing a range of GIS programs and their implementations.


Specific topics include:



Places for this workshop are limited.  To purchase a ticket to this event please go to  If you prefer an invoice please contact Kellee Ireland



SSSI Spatial Summit - 14 September 2011


Sebel Hotel Albert Park.  65 Queen Road, Albert Park


Time: 9am to 5pm




There will be 3 plenary rooms running throughout the day.  Room 1 will host the Remote Sensing Stream, Spatial Information Stream and the Cartography Stream. 


Room 2 will host the Land Surveying Stream and will cover risk management, easements & covenants, proposed Property Law Act, subdivision procedures regulations  to be implemented October, subdivision users guide, proposed E-Plan visualisation tool and latest on the introduction of  E plan pilot programs, engineering & cadastral case studies, current planning review updates, aligning local grids with UTM grids and GPS cadastral issues.


Room 3 will host the Special Interest Room with presentations about Destination Spatial, a Humanitarian Disaster Relief Mapping Workshop, Sustainable Peri-Urban Development -Scenarios and impacts and One Place, many stories.


To purchase a ticket to this event please go to  If you prefer an invoice please contact Kellee Ireland


Sponsors and Exhibitors include:



If your organisation is interested in exhibiting at this premier spatial event please contact Kellee Ireland



Friday 7th October 2011 - Laser Scanning Road Show Bendigo


All Seasons Hotel, 178 - 183 McIvor Road, Bendigo


12:45 to 1:15pm


Terrestrial Laser Scanning: Myths and Realities


The increasing move towards more faster, accurate and cheaper sensor generated data is giving rise to a whole new generation of virtual world applications, with the simple way of looking at objects or environments moving from 2D to 3D. In Europe, Laser Scanning is even being used for cadastral surveys


With presentations from a number of vendors and users you will learn:



Thursday 27th October Twilight Seminar.


Latest update on contemporary projects, planning and legislative releases.



Wednesday 9th November Twilight Seminar


In conjunction with RMIT TAFE final year project presentations



Wed 1st February 2012 First Twilight Seminar for the year 



18-21st April 2012 - National Land Surveying Conference - Expanding on Tradition


The Sebel Albert Park, 65 Queen Road, Albert Park


This National Conference is being run by surveyors for surveyors and will provide the latest information on the many national issues which are having increasing implications on our day to day practice.



The XXII Congress of the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing see

25 August to 1 September 2012



Other Events


2011 Seminar Series - RMIT School of Mathematical and Geospatial Sciences


Download the schedule here



Stephen Davis
School of Mathematics and Geospatial
Sciences, RMIT University
Phone: +61 (3) 9925 2278


Seminars start at 3.30 pm in the Access Grid Room (Bld. 8, Lvl. 9, Rm. 66)



Crowdsourced Emergency Information:


31st of August 2011


Melbourne University, Lecture Theatre C1 on the 4th floor of Engineering C Block, Department of Infrastructure Engineering (Building 175). Entry is easiest via Grattan St.


4pm, Public lecture.


Traditional streams of emergency information and failing to cope with the increasing frequency,scale and severity of natural disasters, such as the earthquake in Christchurch, tsunami in Japan, and cyclone and floods in Queensland in 2011. In such situations, tools assisting the community to help itself provide a unique way to increase resilience. Tools enabling the exchange of crowdsourced emergency information have proven to be highly useful in the above disasters.


BushfireConnect (, Bushfireconnect is a volunteer service to reduce hardship, injury, and save lives and property, by aggregating and mapping official and crowd-source information. It is a hyperlocal, community-based information service combining information on incidents, events and resources, that allows to issue near-real time hyper-localised alerts in an opt-in model, supporting transparency andtimely, informed decisions making. BushfireConnect emerged from a volunteering effort at the Random hacks of Kindness in Sydney,  in 2010, and its Phase 1 went live in February 2011 and was actively used in the 2011 Perth fires. In this talk, we will introduce current efforts in crowdsourcing emergency information in natural and social disasters and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of this source of information.


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