As one of the leading property and real estate developers in Hong Kong, Sino Group is committed to nurturing startups and is always looking for a competitive edge by leveraging practical construction and property tech.
Specifically, the company’s leadership was interested in how they could best utilize tech to improve construction processes with a focus on saving time and enhancing operational efficiency. They were hoping to find a flexible and customizable AI-based solution that would provide smart, autonomous reporting and monitoring alerts to both the field team and project management team and be well integrated inside the company.
In June 2021, Sino Group began piloting OpenSpace for 360 photo documentation on their Tung Tau Yuen Long Town Lot No. 532 project, which broke ground in 2019. The project consists of two 14-story office towers above a landscaped podium block with a shopping mall and basement car park—totaling about 500,000 square feet.
The field team was able to spin up quickly because of how easy and flexible OpenSpace is to use, according to Gary Chan, General Manager (Building Services) at Sino Group.
“We were very impressed by the power of OpenSpace’s video processing and how the AI technology stitches 360 imagery together into one immersive 3D virtual walkthrough,” Chan said. “After imagery captured in the field is auto-uploaded, anyone from the project management team can enjoy it as if they’re watching a movie or walking on-site as usual by themselves.”
During the POC, Sino Group discovered that OpenSpace helps reduce the number of supervising staff stationed on-site, which brings down costs. For example, five different inspectors might have once been required to visit the same floor at different times to focus on their respective areas of expertise, such as MEP installation, concrete work, and fitting-out works. With OpenSpace, one inspector can walk the site/floor and then share an OpenSpace capture with their counterparts, better utilizing the time of the other four staff for other tasks.
OpenSpace’s 3D virtual walkthroughs have also driven significant time savings. Project executives at Sino Group used to conduct their own regular site walks to understand how projects were progressing, which was time-consuming. Now, by initially visiting the site remotely via OpenSpace and getting a preview of site conditions, executives can plan ahead and fine-tune the route they want to walk on a given day, reducing the amount of time they spend in the field.
Sino Group is also anticipating a huge benefit for property management and operation teams once a project is delivered—especially for commercial buildings that may require uplifting or retrofits in the future.
“OpenSpace is a true record to let them know what’s inside the false ceiling and behind the walls and what’s the best headroom or floorspace they can achieve. This can help accelerate the process of making necessary leasing decisions or business layout improvements,” said Chan.
Sino Group eventually not only converted the POC to a fully paid project but also expanded their OpenSpace relationship and usage to two other large projects.
To learn more about how OpenSpace helps Sino Group enhance operational efficiency, save time, improve handovers to operations teams, and secure a competitive advantage in pursuits, download the case study.