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Intergen solves database proliferation

Media Release
30 July 2004

Intergen solves database proliferation

From November, Waikato’s twelve Territorial Authorities and its regional council will update the region’s property valuations online following the development of the Shared Valuation Database Service (“SVDS”) being built by Intergen for the councils.

The Waikato is New Zealand’s first region to bring their entire property valuations together onto one central database, integrating property valuation data from the region’s twelve Territorial Authorities. Valuation service providers will have access to this data for the purposes of performing valuation activities on the properties.

“The SVDS is the first database in New Zealand developed specifically for this purpose. The new solution will improve accuracy, efficiency and timeliness of data being sent between Territorial Authorities, valuation service providers and Environment Waikato,” said Intergen’s Auckland General Manager Shaun Donaghey.

“The new online database will allow each Territorial Authority to update the property valuations on a simple system that shares the information immediately with Environment Waikato.

“The application will also improve the reliability of the data, enabling Territorial Authorities and Environment Waikato to accurately calculate the rates for each property in its region,” said Mr Donaghey.

The application has other advantages too. Valuation service providers, who provide valuation services to Territorial Authorities, will be able to update the property valuation information via a web application. The intention is to open up the property valuation market to new valuers by eliminating the need for a property valuation database to manage the valuation process.

The SVDS has been built utilizing the Microsoft .Net Framework around the core messaging application of Microsoft BizTalk Server 2004. Web Service and FTP interfaces provide connectivity to all parties.

The solution will introduce an XML based messaging system using web services while continuing to support the legacy file format using FTP. An ASP.Net web application has been developed to provide a front end to the information for use by valuation service providers and Territorial Authorities.

As Territorial Authorities update property data in their own systems, such as adding building consents or subdivisions, the details are sent to the SVDS. Valuation service providers are notified of the updates which require them to perform a valuation on the property and enter the new valuation data. The updated valuation data is then sent back to the Territorial Authority where it is loaded into their internal systems.

Traditionally each Territorial Authority has been responsible for maintaining its own property valuation database. Data was exchanged between Territorial Authorities, Environment Waikato and valuation service providers using a proprietary flat file format, spreadsheets and paper.

Environment Waikato consulted with each of the 12 Territorial Authorities in its region to identify the necessary features of an effective online database. Intergen then worked to develop a database that met those criteria.

“The challenge was to develop a user-friendly database that streamlined the data entry process so everyone could use the application regardless of their former procedures,” said Mr Donaghey.

The application has been designed so New Zealand’s other regional councils could utilise the online database for their region.

Intergen has just completed the first development phase of the application, and is now conducting user testing of the application with Environment Waikato. The application is expected to go live in November this year.

Ends

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