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Colombian and Deakin University students will transform Eastern Beach in virtual reality through a “cutting-edge“ project this month.

The project combined virtual reality with real images, sounds and texture in a new way to create a “feeling of place”, team leader Beau Beza said.

The students’ work could lead to a virtual reality platform where architects and developers immerse themselves in their project designs, he said.

“Static drawings can only show you so much.”

The students took photos over the past fortnight with a 360-degree camera to create a virtual “Colombian cultural experience” at Eastern Beach, Dr Beza said.

The project would help determine the realism required for a virtual reality platform for planning approvals and large-scale infrastructure projects.

“What tends to happen if an architect is designing a space is they create a scene that looks as real as possible but there’s still a large disconnect between the space and the community judging it,“ Dr Beza said

The students’ work could lead to an app allowing people to virtually experience a proposed development at different times of the day, he hoped.

“It could be as simple as going to the planning authority website, downloading an app with the virtual environment, going out on-site, standing in the space and interacting with it, potentially from something as simple as a smartphone.”

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