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Visual simulation specialist firm Truescape had to abandon its leased premises in Golder House in Kilmore St, which was inside the cordoned-off central city red zone after the February earthquake.
The building was cracked, there was liquefaction and some staff had to smash their way out of the building.
Within days company founder Sam Chaffey signed a four-year lease for new premises in Sydenham. The premises were little more than a warehouse. New furniture and equipment had to be bought, but Chaffey was determined to get the business up and running to fulfil contracts for clients.
The company produces three-dimensional simulated digital photographs and videos for large industrial development projects.
It generates ''human field-of-view'' printed images and computer-generated video of how proposed projects such as dams and roads would appear in the landscape. Clients include petroleum giants BP and Shell.
Truescape was able to access its duplicate off-site servers which were stored at internet service provider Snap's data centre. Since the quake, Truescape, which already had a subsidiary in the United States, has established subsidiaries in Canada and Australia. So far the growth has been self-funded. Truescape, started in 1995, has revenues now in the $4 million to $5m range and growing. The business is gaining ''significant traction'' in the mining sector and has worked on projects in Canada, the US, Australia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and New Zealand, Chaffey said.
Interactivity is now a major focus. The firm produced the interactive model of the CTV building used during the royal commission hearings. The Christchurch rebuild presented further opportunities for the firm's interactive modelling for things such as infrastructure and traffic planning, Chaffey said.
- © Fairfax NZ News