As we enter a new era for public engagement in regeneration, will such ‘planning’ tools also help demystify what it means to buy into (or even oppose) large-scale urban change? Surely the answer lies in when and how it is used. How early in the process? To what end? Against what scheme and to what certainty? Lots of interesting issues to consider.

Ultimately we have to make the process more human, and such technologies if used and explained in the right away will provide much more clarity. What will my neighbourhood look like? How much light will my flat get? How far away will the next property be? What services will I be able to access? Where will the bus stops be? How long will it be a construction site next door? You get my drift...

A great initiative by MHCLG and I for one am excited to see where such technologies can take us in our desire to positively engage with affected communities.