3D images visualise biodiversity net gain projects

Specialists in creating amazing visualisations and 3D services, The Ruby Cube designs high-quality digital content, from images and animations to interactive 360/VR experiences for architects, ecologists, conservationists and landscape architects.

Natural habitat: a visualisation of a biodiversity net gain habitat scheme.

Digital content expertise

This boutique London studio creates realistic renders of the natural environment and schemes to enhance biodiversity. Its computer-generated imagery can be valuable to ecologists designing biodiversity net gain (BNG) schemes and developers, helping them to fully explain plans for enhancing habitats and achieve planning permission.

For example, The Ruby Cube can devise biodiversity net gain visualisation animation to demonstrate the way that a proposed habitat improvement scheme would look years into the future, helping clients demonstrate the transformation into biodiverse environments such as wildflower meadows, wetlands and native scrub, in a mature condition in 20- or 30-years’ time.

As such natural habitat takes time to mature, the ability to show how they will look is beneficial when presenting a net gain scheme to stakeholders such as land managers and local planning authorities. The Ruby Cube process involves researching the correct plants and grasses to use in habitat enhancements, the terrain and scale, and the camera angles and aerial shots needed.

Helping ecologists and architects to deliver net gain on a development site

The Ruby Cube’s services:

  • Architectural visualisations.
  • New habitat plans created in 3D and merged into a photo montage.
  • A fully modelled 3D site using satellite imagery to produce 3D renders, adding habitat to create aerial before and after images, with the ability to show close-up details of a site’s ecological value.
  • Virtual tours: a 360-degree view illustrating how the site is enhancing biodiversity.
  • Animations: building up a biodiversity gain site in 3D.
  • Cross sections and illustrations of site biodiversity.

Specialist skills to demonstrate a biodiversity net gain plan

Director Karen Gazzard said:

We specialise in delivering exceptional 3D services for landscape architects, garden designers, ecologists, conservationists and architects. Our goal is to bring our client’s designs to life – we help to portray their designs with stunning visuals. Why describe your design when you can show it in photorealistic glory?

Our areas of expertise and passion lie in depicting the natural environment and planting. This has led us to become the leading visualisation studio producing 3D renders of BNG habitats and biodiverse environments. We love what we do, and we believe that building great relationships with our clients is key to producing the best work possible- we are approachable, friendly, creative and diligent in all that we do.

A Biodiversity Net Gain visualisation

Here is one of The Ruby Cube’s amazing projects that illustrates how useful the technology is for a range of stakeholders and for helping a scheme through the planning process. Following the implementation of mandatory biodiversity net gain in April 2024, all new proposed development sites must be left in a measurably better state than before development, according to a biodiversity metric, by making on site or off site biodiversity gains. This has led to the creation of Habitat Banks that allow developers to buy biodiversity units off site, however, the resulting habitat enhancement schemes take around 30 years to mature, making it difficult to demonstrate the improvement in the general condition of wildlife habitats.

This is where The Ruby Cube’s skills come in. A 3D visualisation can demonstrate how a development site will achieve biodiversity net gain and allow a developer to fulfil their planning obligations. With this project for the client Environment Bank, they provided visualisations of the future habitat to install on-site, on information boards located at points along public right-of-way paths, to help educate the public about the site’s ecological features and wildlife species, as well as to demonstrate the positive changes to the existing habitat to the landowner.

A digital rendering of a biodiversity net gain approach to help nature conservation.

The challenge was to accurately depict some features specific to the site, such as ‘ridge and furrow’ relief on the terrain, and an existing Norman church. The studio used DEFRA’s LiDar digital terrain model to create a 3D terrain and modelled the church so that it could be added to the renders from any angle. The visualisation shows where habitat creation or enhancement will be sited and how the areas of mixed scrub, lowland meadows, grassland, and a traditional orchard will provide measurable improvements to biodiversity value.

What we like about this specialist company:

As The Ruby Cube specialises in work for environmental and architectural projects, it has an in-depth understanding of the requirement to deliver biodiversity net gain schemes, combined with the skills to demonstrate how natural habitats will look several years into the future, giving stakeholders a greater understanding.

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