Turn NYC Into a Post-Apocalyptic Jungle With Street View

March 18, 2014 | Andy Cush

Urban Jungle is a Google Street View hack that, as the name suggests, adorns your city with trees, vines, and, with a bit of imagination on your end, sweltering heat and humidity. Creator Einar Öberg explains:

Visit any place available in Street View by entering a location, drag the map to browse around and drop the little guy on a road. It works best in environment with large buildings surrounding the streets. Some locations need a little more imagination than others.

This experiment using an undocumented part of Street View, the depth data. With that a depth map and a normal map is generated, which can be used in the shaders and to plot geometry and sprites in (almost) the correct position in 3d space.

It’s especially satisfying to render Times Square and other landmarks post-apocalyptic, but Urban Jungle works just about everywhere. Try it here.