The HCM City University of Technology is developing Geographic Information System (GIS) applications towards improving construction and management of underground infrastructure.

Dr Le Van Trung, director of the university's Centre for Developing Information Technology and Geographic Information Systems (DITAGIS), said the new 3D GIS software, expected to be completed in August, would be able to display detailed status of the underground utilities such as drainage, electricity and water systems.

It will also help track down areas with potential subsidence or leaking pipes, he said.

The GIS 2D applications, now being used by some water and electricity companies, can only show images of the surface of constructions, he said.

A shortage of data on underground infrastructure and an overlapping of responsibilities in the management of urban infrastructure are responsible for unsystematic planning and poor quality of public work construction in the city, said Nguyen Van Hiep, deputy director of HCM City 's Department of Construction.

There are six departments and agencies in charge of urban infrastructure management in the city, Hiep said.

They fail to share data on urban infrastructure with each other, leading to repeated digging up of the same road for different works, he said.

Many incidences of road surfaces subsiding suddenly without warning had taken place in the city late last year, he added.

Officials are hoping that the new system will help streamline the planning and execution of underground works and spare residents the difficulties caused by haphazard execution of such projects. /.