“I can accurately find the size of the site, measure the setbacks, and get a scenario within a couple of seconds. Archistar saves me up to six hours per week.

Santhurie Naidoo

Town Planner, Merc Capital

“I work for Merc Capital. We work on lots of different projects, from medium, large and major projects. Our portfolio includes shopping malls, hotels, childcare centres, large-scale residential buildings, boarding houses, retail buildings, commercial buildings, industrial and mixed use buildings.

It’s a really big portfolio in a big range and there’s a lot of moving pieces. We’re always looking for new investors and investments. That means planning is a large part of my job.

I’m a town planner with 18 years of experience. My work involves using lots of different planning systems and planning programs to plot up scenarios. Ultimately, my goal is to come up with the best-case scenario for us, our stakeholders, and the local community.

Our challenges before Archistar revolved around measuring setbacks and understanding site areas. You don’t find details like the size of the site, the dimensions, and the land in other platforms.

We also needed to keep bringing in maps from other places, which involved having to pay for all those different platforms. If you’re working with four or five sites, you may need eight different maps for those sites. That means you have around 40 windows open, and that’s on a good day. It all adds up and it slows the system down.”

What has changed since you started using Archistar?

“While I still use many of my old tools, such as ePlanning Spatial Viewer, Archistar is now my first port of call. It gives me the site boundaries, the size of the sites, and the square meters. I can accurately measure distances, measure the setbacks, plot that in, and get a scenario within a couple of seconds.

That’s something that no other program is going to give me.”

What are the key benefits you have experienced with Archistar?

“We’ve seen big improvements in productivity and efficiency.

For example, we work with a lot of internal real estate agents, architects, and engineers. Sometimes they will just call to ask what they can do with a site. Instead of spending an hour or two on the site and understanding what they can do, I just pull up a report from Archistar and send it to them. I may do this about twice a week, which means the platform saves between three to six hours of my time per week.

I also love the Archistar Academy Courses and have taken the ArchiCAD one recently. The tutorials are really good, quick, and efficient. It’s not long and boring and you can pick it up in two or three hours. I end up feeling like I’m Neo in The Matrix!

But if I could keep only one feature, it would be the scenarios from the design engine. It’s visual, which is ideal for my needs. You want to see what’s possible in a visual format so you can make quick decisions.”

Would you recommend Archistar to others?

“Congratulations on the app. It’s amazing! Finally, someone’s done what I’ve been hoping and wishing someone would do, so it’s fantastic.

The team has also given me amazing service, which is highly appreciated.”

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