Aerial photography funding appeals

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Aerial photography can be very useful for mapping purposes however it costs money. This page is a place where you can create an appeal for funds and monitor the success of the appeal.

Current appeals

West Midlands

There is no Yahoo Aerial Imagery of any detail available for the West Midlands. It is generally good enough to trace the outlines of parks and recreation grounds and the larger industrial buildings which have white reflective roofs. But even these traces are estimations.

The city centre has proved exceptionally troublesome to map given the low quality of GPS traces because of the preponderance of tall buildings. The recent NaPTAN import of bus-stop data has shown that our current alignment of streets in the city centre is not the best. Verification of NaPTAN data in the city centre and further improvement of alignment is not really possible without access to decent aerial photography.

This would enable us to correctly align streets, complete the NaPTAN verification and also improve and complete the mapping of major buildings.

Our current estimate of the cost is £5,000 for the area enclosed by the ring road.

Past appeals

Gaza Strip

Fully funded

  • Amount requested: £4K
  • Amount raised: £4K
  • Location: Gaza Strip
  • Charitable partner: JumpStart

Commercial photography FAQ

Where do we buy photography from?

Digital Globe seem to have a good range of products.

eMap in the USA offer a good range of products from QuickBird and WorldView-1 satellites: good range of suitable products.

Are we allowed to derive mapping from the aerial photography?

If you buy the right product then yes, but the aerial photography itself will be copyright.

How much does it cost

About $17 per sq km for basic 2 meter resolution photography. $12 / sq km possible with charitable partner.

Why can't we just use Google's photography?

Their terms and conditions don't allow us the derive mapping.

What about Yahoo's photography?

We are able to use this where it is available, but it is not universally available and in some areas is significant cloud cover, is of lower resolution and may be out of date.

Other sources of aerial photography?

OpenAerialMap provides a place for people to share permissively licensed aerial photography..

Aerial Imagery contains a list of known usable imagery layers.

Vertical Aerial Photographs contains information about buying or making aerial photography.

How to raise the funds

  • Say what you want and how much it will cost
  • Say why it is important that you get it and what then beneifts would be if you got it
  • Say who you have approached and what offers you have had

If you want to use commerical aerial photography you will need to raise money from organisations and individuals sympathetic with the project or who stand to gain in some way.

Transport authorites

Transport authorities are often encouraged to support 'sustainable travel' including walking, cycling and public transport. Mapping showing walking routes is important and many, especially in the UK are frustrated with OS licensing costs, usage restrictions and their coverage of walking routes.

Transport operators

Some of the larger transport operators might be worth approaching to see if they would like to be associated with the project, particularly if there is a public transport emphasis on the project.

Local businesses

They may help as part of their 'Corporate and social responsibility' but might like their support to be recognised in some way in the local community

Charitable trusts

The project might fit with the aims of a charitable trust. See section on charitable partners below.

Individual donations

Individuals might be keen to help. You might consider accepting paypal donations and using a charitable partner for larger donations which can be tax deductable. It is probably not worth the effort of using a charitable partner for smaller amounts.

Practical matters

Managing the money

If you are raising money then you need to keep the money side very clear and well managed. It may be appropriate for the Foundation for fulfill this role, if not then another suitable organisation should be used.

Using a charitable partner

A charitable partner is relevant if you are planning to attract funding from a charitable trust or wish to reclaim tax from individual donations. This approach should be used in situations where a commercial approach would not be viable. The partner needs to have charitable aims that fit with the project aims and need to be comfortable with the project. The charitable partner accepts the funds from the donors and needs to ensure that the funds are used as intended. A charitable partner will normally take a small handling fee but this should not be a large percentage.

To date OpenStreetMap has used two charitable partners, including Campaign for Better Transport in the UK (only suitable for UK related work) and JumpStart who can work with projects in developing countries.

Hosting the data

Someone is going to need to host the map tiles and make it available.

more details needed.

Who owns the license

A legal entity is going to need to purchase the license. This might be the Foundation or some other suitable 'trusted' organisation. See 'Practical matters' for details.

How do people access the data

We are not able to give general public access to the aerial photography in most cases and the URL will normally be handed out on request to a group of people who will do the work.