Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (NYSE:JEC) has delivered a real-time, virtual reality (VR) visualization environment to the Welsh Government to support the upgrade program for two sections of the A465 Heads of Valley highway project in South Wales. The solution is part of the technical advisory services Jacobs is currently providing to the A465 project, which includes widening of the existing road and six new junctions to support the social and economic growth of the area.

Developed as part of Jacobs Connected Enterprise, a suite of integrated digital capabilities and solutions, the fully-immersive VR environment enables the community and other stakeholders to visualize and better understand the impacts of the scheme on people, property and the environment.

The VR solution consists of approximately 18 kilometers of road, 114 square miles of accurate terrain and 5,000 modelled building structures. These features are enhanced with animated vehicle traffic, environmental sounds and animated foliage growth over 15 years. Users are able to view and navigate the landscape in four different modes: a helicopter fly-over, a simulated car journey, viewing points of interest or roaming freely.

"The use of 3D modelling tools and visualization techniques as part of the design enables the client to obtain a much better understanding of the project and detect any potential risks," said Jacobs Buildings and Infrastructure Europe Senior Vice President and General Manager Donald Morrison. "This forward-thinking approach allows stakeholders to make better informed decisions and reach maximum efficiency in the project development."

The Welsh Government welcomed the results provided by the VR solution.

"This project aims to facilitate the economic regeneration of the Heads of Valleys area, reducing journey times, improving reliability and enhancing road safety," explained Welsh Government Project Director Matt Enoch. "Jacobs was critical to our success in taking the presentation of the scheme beyond the 2D and fixed path visuals that we normally use, making it possible to engage a range of stakeholders in a far more interactive and user-friendly way than we have before."

Jacobs will continue to support the Welsh Government as the project moves through statutory processes, tendering and the appointment of preferred contractor before onset of construction activities at the end of 2019. The new highway is planned to open in late 2022.

Jacobs leads the global professional services sector delivering solutions for a more connected, sustainable world. With $15 billion in combined revenue and a talent force more than 74,000 strong, Jacobs provides a full spectrum of services including scientific, technical, professional and construction- and program-management for business, industrial, commercial, government and infrastructure sectors. For more information, visit www.jacobs.com.

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