The National Land Agency (NLA), in collaboration with Globe Insurance Company Ltd., on Wednesday (September 22), launched its groundbreaking interactive map of the island, called ‘iMap Jamaica’.
Persons will be able to access the programme via the web base application, eLandJamaica, which allows persons to obtain copies of land related documents, such as certificates of title, valuation roll reports and deposited plans.
The new programme will be available to the public free of cost and will allow persons anywhere in the world to spatially identify any parcel of land in Jamaica and access related land information.
Speaking at the launch, which was held at the Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunications and Special Projects, Hon. Daryl Vaz said the initiative is in keeping with the Government’s vision of a public sector/private sector partnership in development.
Mapping professional, Sherlock Glenister, gives a brief demonstration on the features of the new programme, ‘iMap Jamaica’, during its launch at the Knutsford Court Hotel, in New Kingston, today (September 22).
The Minister commended the companies on their revolutionary work and said the iMap is an excellent tool for land interest groups and persons.
The partnership involves the NLA providing Globe Insurance with pertinent land related data for the insurance company’s internal monitoring purposes.
Globe Insurance, in exchange, financed the design of the map application, and customised it to suit the needs of the NLA customers. Technical resources in the creation of iMap Jamaica were jointly supplied by the two entities.
In comparing the product to Google Earth, Mr. Vaz said iMap can empower Jamaicans to access and use land information in ways that were thought impossible not so long ago.
Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunications and Special Projects, Hon. Daryl Vaz (second right), watches as Acting Manager of Information Services, National Land Agency (NLA), Gerry Vaz (centre), demonstrates how to search for the location of a community using iMap, during its launch at the Knutsford Court Hotel, in New Kingston, today (September 22). Looking on are (from left): Chief Executive Officer of the NLA, Elizabeth Stair; Deputy Chairman, Advisory Board, NLA, Wenworth Charles and Managing Director of Globe Insurance Company Jamaica Ltd., Evan Thwaites.
“iMap can enable us to zoom in and out and even virtually glide over the length and breadth of the island to navigate and explore, not only the urban and town centres of our island, but also the rural and not so known corners of our rich landscape,” he remarked.
He said iMap can be used as a tool by many to assist in proper planning, development and land management. “I do believe that an important and commendable innovation like iMap Jamaica does support the government’s strategy for transforming Jamaica’s economy from developing status into a developed economy by 2030,” he argued.
The Minister informed that the Spatial Data Management Division of the Office of the Prime Minister is working, in collaboration with the NLA, to commission the Virtual Reference System network, which will assist in the provision of accurate and timely spatial data.
“This is a network of 13 GPS (Global Positioning System) stations strategically located across the island that will provide service 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” he noted.
Chief Executive Officer of the NLA, Elizabeth Stair, said iMap is a work in progress. “In using iMap, you may find, especially in the rural areas, that there may be limited or no information on the property you are searching for, but over time this will change,” she informed.
Mrs. Stair said the NLA has placed great emphasis on mapping and as the company works to update its maps, this will be reflected in iMap.
“We are working on maps for places of interest and tourist areas. The aim is eventually, in the first instance, to complete all of the main towns in Jamaica,” she pointed out.
She said the NLA was extremely grateful to Globe Insurance for the role it played in financing the venture.