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Grace Mok Reality Capture Recap

October 17th, 2019


On October 17, 2019, the New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) hosted a presentation by Grace Mok. Grace is a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs with the Coro New York Leadership Center. By participating in seminars, individual placements, and interviews, she and other Coro Fellows have the opportunity to use the city as a classroom. Through these broad experiences, fellows gain a deep understanding of the intricacies of who and what run civic life in New York City.

Grace’s first placement was with DDC. With the support of Aisha Doris, Director of Partnerships, and Lee Llambelis, Deputy Commissioner of Community Partnerships and STEAM Initiatives, Grace worked closely with Omar El-Anwar, Director of Process Improvement, Subhash Tuladhar, Executive Director of Project Controls and Tad Robertson, Project Controls consultant, to pilot a new state-of-the-art software    technology called Reality Capture. Reality Capture uses real world scans of objects or sites to create digital 3D model representations. DDC was especially interested in learning more about the technology’s ability to save time and money on construction projects as well as increase team communication.  

“Reality capture has tremendous potential to help us deliver projects on time,” stated, Subhash Tuladhar, Executive Director of Project Controls. “Project management teams can accomplish a lot more work more effectively and in a shorter time frame.”

Grace’s project builds on the work of the previous Coro Fellow, Zach Litif—who piloted a program that focused on the potential of Virtual Reality to assist in DDC’s design and construction processes. The pilot was launched over the summer of 2018 via DDC’s High School Summer Internship Program. Students learned to use 360 cameras, video editing software, and VR headsets to create an immersive project tailored to the construction management process. Learning and implementing virtual reality and reality capture projects have added to DDC’s knowledge base and real time understanding of the technology’s functionality. Innovative thought is what keeps DDC on the cutting edge of construction technology.  

“We are pleased to be a place where thought and practice come together. STEAM Initiatives continue to encourage hands on opportunities for students and fellows to learn about the built environment” said Deputy Commissioner Llambelis. “Reality capture offers exponential possibility.” 

Based on her research, Grace produced a white paper providing key insights and recommendations. DDC will continue to explore the benefits and challenges associated with Reality Capture.

(Left to Right) Omar El-Anwar, Grace Mok and Tad Thistleton at the Marcy House Community Center
Grace Mok taking a 360 camera picture of the site