Cover Image

Project Methodology and Workflow for Emergency Drone Recording and Processing: Case study Colonial Ammunition Company Shot Tower, Aotearoa New Zealand

Regan Potangaroa, Renata Jadresin Milic, Sam Smith


The paper explains the methodology and workflow for the emergency drone recording and processing applied in the Colonial Ammunition Company Shot Tower case study in Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand. It sheds light on the strategic decisions employed during the drone scan and following data processing under significant limitations. The imperfections in data capture and processing, driven by real-world constraints, present valuable lessons for future endeavours. By capturing the intricacies of this emergency documentation process, the paper aims to contribute valuable insights and replicable workflows to the broader field of heritage preservation. The intersection of technology, urgency, and collaboration showcased in this case study opens avenues for refining methodologies, incorporating advancements, and developing standardised processes for heritage preservation in emergency scenarios.

By initiating a broader discourse on the need for standardised processes, collaboration frameworks, and technological advancements in heritage preservation, this paper contributes to this relevant and necessary topic that has not received much attention in academia so far. This paper contributes not only to a case study but is a call to action for developing comprehensive frameworks that empower heritage preservation in the digital age. Shot Tower's challenges and the final demolition in February 2023 serve as a microcosm of the larger issues confronting heritage sites in Aotearoa New Zealand — issues that demand systematic solutions and a coordinated effort from the various entities entrusted with heritage management.



heritage preservation; technological innovation; emergency heritage documentation process; UAV photogrammetry; Aotearoa New Zealand

Full Text:



Addison, A. C. (2000). Emerging trends in virtual heritage. IEEE Multimedia, 7(2), 22–25.

Antonopoulou, S., & Bryan, P. (2017). BIM for heritage: Developing a historic building information model. Historic England. Retrieved December 31, 2023, from http:

Bedford, J. (2017). Photogrammetric applications for cultural heritage: Guidance for good practice. Historic England. Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Besen, P., Boarin, P. & Haarhoff, E. (2020). Energy and Seismic Retrofit of Historic Buildings in New Zealand: Reflections on Current Policies and Practice. The Historic Environment: Policy & Practice, 11(1), 91-117

Boardman, C., & Bryan, P. (2018). 3D laser scanning for Heritage: Advice and guidance on the use of laser scanning in archaeology and architecture. Historic England. Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Colonial Ammunition Company Shot Tower. Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga. (n.d.). Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Demolition of Colonial Ammunition Company Shot Tower to begin Tuesday. OurAuckland. (2023, February 20). Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Drone footage used to make digital record of New Zealand’s last standing shot tower. Massey News. (2023, March 14). Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Hamilton, J., & Jadresin-Milic, R. (2020). Preservation issues and controversies: Challenges of underutilised and abandoned places. In A. Ghaffarianhoseini, A. Ghaffarianhoseini and N. Nasmith (Eds.), Imaginable Futures: Design Thinking, and the Scientific Method, 54th International Conference of the Architectural Science Association 2020, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand (pp. 885-894). Retrieved from Heritage., English, Investment Property Databank., and RICS Foundation. 2002. The Investment Performance of Listed Office Buildings: A Regular Survey. RICS Foundation, 20.legis

Jadresin Milic, R., McPherson, P., McConchie, G., Reutlinger, T., & Singh, S. (2022). Architectural History and Sustainable Architectural Heritage Education: Digitalisation of Heritage in New Zealand. Sustainability, 14(24), 16432.

Jadresin Milic, R., Reutlinger T., Singh, S. (2022). "Heritage Bites" - Digital lunchtime talks on historic heritage matters, Historic Places Aotearoa and ICOMOS New Zealand. Accessed November 11, 2023 on

Laing, R. (2020). Built Heritage Modelling and visualisation: The potential to engage with issues of heritage value and wider participation. Developments in the Built Environment, 4, 100017

Ministry for Culture and Heritage. (2021, October). Strengthening protections for heritage buildings: Report identifying issues within New Zealand’s heritage protection system, November 2018. Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Museum to acquire historic weathervane from CAC Shot Tower. OurAuckland. (2023, April 3). Retrieved December 31, 2023, from

Pfeiffer, K. (1989). Historic Buildings of Northland and Auckland: A Register of Classified Buildings. New Zealand Historic Places Trust.

Shot tower saved for history. (2023, April 20). Central Leader, p. 1


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2023 Regan Potangaroa, Renata Jadresin Milic, Sam Smith

ISSN 1828 5961
Registration at L'Aquila Law Court no 3/15 on 29th June, 2015.
Indexed in SCOPUS. Diamond Open Access. All papers are subjected to double blind peer review process by qualified reviewers.

Journal founded by Roberto Mingucci