Geospex Drive-Time and Radius Buffers: How-To (Plus, Save on Gas!)
Geospex from BuildCentral is a planned construction visualization tool. With Geospex’s Heatmaps, Clusters, and a variety of interactive map overlays for geographic, demographic, and market insights, planned construction insights and analytics have never been more accessible and actionable. That isn’t all, however, that Geospex can do: Geospex’s drive-time and radius buffers allow users to map distance and drive-time boundaries from a given location or project site.
Unfortunately, gas prices are high across the United States, and that probably won’t change as long as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues. That price hike can spell real trouble for workers who commute or travel for work, especially those who are on the road more frequently in the spring months as construction sites open and COVID precautions disappear. Geospex’s drive-time and radius buffers can mitigate some of the extra costs brought on by increased travel and higher gas prices by helping users to identify and prioritize nearby projects depending on their proximities to one another and to other sites of interest.
If it’s not already clear, we’ll go ahead and call out the people Geospex can help in this way: like, everyone! Are you a service provider? Supplier? Investor, manufacturer, builder, or otherwise? Buffers are a tool worth familiarizing yourself with, particularly if you’re managing fleets and are looking to optimize time- and fuel-efficiency between locations.
Anyway, now that we’ve gotten through our spiel about yet another of our game-changing features, we can actually show you how to use it.
How to Make and Use a Geospex Drive-Time and Radius Buffer
For the purposes of our example, we’ll use our recently-launched Planned Retail product. Say you’re interested in planned and ongoing renovation or expansion projects by grocery stores. We start with a search using those parameters, and using Geospex’s Heatmap layer, we can see the areas with high planned grocery construction activity.
Here, we see over 14 million square feet in proposed, planned, and ongoing grocery renovation or addition/expansion projects across the United States. As you can see, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, and Philadelphia have particularly bright hotspots. Because we haven’t yet written about it anyway, and because this article’s author went to college there, let’s go with Philadelphia!
So, we searched for Philadelphia using the search bar in the top right of the Geospex map. In the bottom left of the Geocode Result pop-up for Philadelphia, you should see a bar graph icon. Click on it and proceed by entering the custom mile or drive-time boundary you want to create, as shown below. We went with projects within an hour’s drive of Philly.
As you can see in the graphic above, the Geospex drive-time and radius buffer tool gives you information on the projects located within the custom boundary, the brands associated with those construction projects, and the demographic data for people in the bounded area. Evidently, the nearby New York and Washington, D.C. metropolitan areas appear to be real hubs for grocery renovation and addition/expansion projects.
This example is of course quite rudimentary and straightforward, but it should also give you a sense not only for the kind of granular data points that BuildCentral collects and presents, but also for the myriad ways in which BuildCentral’s visualization and data analysis tools can serve your company’s needs while optimizing its daily operations.
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