Virtual reality is proving to be a real game-changer with firms adopting the advanced technology to demonstrate site potential to prospective tenants and owners.

This technology was recently used by leading architectural, interior and graphic design firm Buchan to produce a detailed 360-degree VR retail tour for Yamanto Central, a master planned 20,000-square-metre shopping, dining and lifestyle destination located at the southern gateway to Ipswich.

Senior associate Anthony Rawson says, “Nearly all forms of visualisation involve technical elements such as plans, elevations and sections, which require a large degree of interpretation by the viewer.”

Rawson believes even highly stylised views, such as ultra wide-angle perspectives, can lack context and provide an overly dramatic impression of a design. Though scale physical models can help potential leasers understand the built form better, these still lack the ability to convey the experience of being within a building or viewing a structure at true scale.

Virtual reality, on the other hand, can give a completely accurate impression of the scale and volume of a space. High-resolution stereo views, carefully textured and lit, can offer an uncannily real experience of a number of design options, giving clients much greater understanding of their choices and likely outcomes, he added.

Continuous advancements in VR technology are allowing practitioners to add point-to-point navigation, infographics, plan reference information and spatial sound to their VR tours to enhance the user experience further.

View the web version of Buchan’s Yamanto Central 360-degree retail tour here.