Most Popular American Architecture in 3D Google Earth by AIA and Google

National Cathedral AIA 150 3D Model in Google EarthGoogle released some new layers yesterday. Under the Featured Content layer you will find two “American Institute of Architects” sub-layers. Google spent weeks developing 3D models of the top examples of architecture in America for viewing in Google Earth. Here’s information from a press release:

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Google Earth launch two new AIA layers to Google Earth today: Blueprint for America and America’s Favorite Architecture. In marking AIA’s 150th anniversary and Google’s first YouTube announcement (see below), the AIA and Google Earth partnership demonstrates the impact of architecture on our lives to more than 200 million Google Earth users.

The Blueprint for America layer documents community service efforts funded by the AIA, where AIA members donating their time and expertise to collaborate with community leaders and local citizens to address issues such as homelessness, sustainable communities, and downtown revitalization. America’s Favorite Architecture layer features the American public’s favorites as selected by a poll announced earlier this year. Google Earth viewers can see many just created 3-D models of the ballparks, bridges, buildings and memorials that characterize architecture for Americans as well as comment about the poll results.

In a post here at GEB last week, I had noticed there were number of excellent new models posted by Google to the 3D Warehouse during the past few weeks. Now we know why these models were being done! To view the models, turn on the new American Institute of Architects Layer and fly to the placemarks shown (Google Earth 4 required). Zoom down close enough to see the buildings (or double click the placemarks). You will see the buildings automatically load. I recommend turning off GE’s normal 3D Buildings layer if you experience performance problems in big cities. There are some excellent building models in the collection, and I will highlight some later in a video.
Google also released a YouTube video talking about the new AIA 150 release:

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was released. He worked in 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition.


  1. Ick of the East says:

    Those are terrific. Especially in DDD.
    But how do you get those ugly yellow-house icons to disappear from the scene?

  2. It’s about time they took this approach! Sorry, but that just wrapped up every potential for Google Earth in my mind over the last few years. I’d like to see more initiatives like this being communicated in much the same way to the public.

  3. Grayson says:

    It’s nice!!

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