New York City, January 3, 2006 – PropertyShark.com, a data analytical tool for property search, just announced they have taken a picture of every building in Manhattan—over 40,000 in total.
“We’ve indexed each photo to an actual building,” explains Matthew Haines, founder, PropertyShark.com. “Each photo has been taken by hand, by our team of extraordinary photographers, with high-quality digital cameras equipped with wide angle lenses to capture entire buildings and portions of neighboring properties,” continues Haines. “These photographers have quite a few stories to tell about all they’ve encountered in their mission to complete this project.
“When we first came up with the idea to do this project, we tried to fashion a much more high-tech way of taking pictures, but eventually went back to the most effective method—taking pictures of each building on foot, walking nearly 1000 miles in total,” comments Ryan Slack, chief executive officer, PropertyShark.com
“While this started out as a practical addition to our site, useful for professionals and consumers alike, as we began to work through the project, in addition to its business uses, it became a conceptual art project with sociological value,” declares Haines.
“Both Ryan and I moved to New York City from California and we came to love the gritty, big city feel—we wanted to capture the overwhelming size of it. We saw that New York City was undergoing a huge boom in new construction, and we knew that five years from now the city we had come to love would no longer be the city newcomers would see. We wanted to capture all the parts just as they are,” continues Haines, quick to note that these are not glamorous architectural shots, but rather everyday photos.
“No other company out there has done this,” proclaims Slack. “MSN, Google, Yahoo and Amazon’s A9.com are all attempting to do similar photo projects in Manhattan, yet none of these players have achieved what we have,” Slack elaborates proudly. “A9, which is farthest along, only shows the first two stories of each building, while PropertyShark.com offers a full picture of the entire façade; in addition, we provide shots of every building on every street, whereas they only have certain commercial streets available. We also link every photo to a specific building address, but A9’s photos are not indexed to specific addresses only general locations.”
In addition to displaying the pictures in the PropertyShark.com’s property reports, the photos are also incorporated into the site’s maps, showing exactly where the building is located.
“A9′s photos are displayed by showing all streets as East-West, which can make it difficult to know what building you are seeing or even what side of the street you are viewing,” adds Haines.
The photos can be used for a wide variety of purposes:
- Researching buildings for sale
- Checking out apartments
- Scouting a neighborhood or location
- Perusing a commercial district—viewing the exterior of a restaurant, bar or shop
- Combining them with state-of-the-art interactive PropertyShark.com maps to quickly search to locate properties/locations
PropertyShark.com’s photographers will not get to rest for long. The company plans to continue until all of NYC is photographed.
With over 20 million properties in twenty major markets, PropertyShark.com provides real estate professionals and investors with data and tools on all aspects of property, including building details, ownership information, recent sales prices, property tax, sophisticated maps, apartments for sale, foreclosures and pre-foreclosures, mailing lists, photos, and more, available directly from the web. PropertyShark.com strives to level the playing field by offering independent real estate firms, investors, and savvy consumers the information transparency essential to evaluate real estate and make informed decisions. For more information go to: www.propertyshark.com