In 2010 MWH worked with Hamilton City Council on a pilot project to digitise the Council’s water asset information. Previously, all HCC spatial water asset information was held in paper plans and logs making review, comparison and assessment of the assets more difficult. The digitisation of this information was required to provide more accurate asset management assessments and to minimise operations expenditure and was particularly important prior to the start of a critical modelling contract.
Only by drawing on an integrated national and international team could this project be undertaken within previously perceived impossible budget and time constraints. The work was managed locally by MWH’s Hamilton office supported by a Technical Lead role from its team in Christchurch; with digitisation being conducted by ResourceNet, MWH’s specialist information technology management team based in Pune, India. This global team converted the HCC logs, existing Hansen data, and as-built drawings into a digitised Geographic Information System (GIS) which meets the requirements of HCC information systems and future needs. A flagging system for all the data was also derived to show where discrepancies occurred between data held in the logs and Hansen. This has proved invaluable to the Council’s Data Team in checking and searching for anomalies in the data held on the city’s water assets.
The ResourceNet team has previously developed GIS solutions for some of the largest clients in the world including a recent project to digitise three waters information for the entire city of San Diego, USA. Using tried and tested tools and systems ResourceNet has provided HCC with a solution that meets international best-practises at a very cost-effective price.
With this global experience in similar projects the team was confident that the processes and tools, both industry standard and bespoke, were available to successfully deliver the required outcomes. The technical team in New Zealand spent a great deal of time understanding the client requirements and the source datasets so that the best possible solution could be developed and implemented. This was to utilise the asset attribute information when capturing the data in the GIS to validate and flag any errors on the fly so they could be remedied instantly. This ensured that all assets were only captured once, were indeed in the correct location relative to the appropriate log, and that they met certain rules based criteria such as connectivity and capping of pipes. There were some validation queries that could not be resolved by the capture team. These were passed back to the HCC asset team whose extensive knowledge of the network made resolution a very simple exercise in the overwhelming majority of cases.
To address substantial client concerns the team incorporated a trial phase in June 2010 to digitise 15% of HCC’s water data within a tight time frame and to verify quality. In terms of process, this project has particularly highlighted the benefits of using a trial or pilot study phase to minimise risk on the larger project. The reduction in risk provided improved cost certainty and confidence in the agreed scope of the work and the methodology that was subsequently employed. With the success of this trial, the digitisation of the remaining 85% of the city’s water asset data was completed by December 2010.
(To find out more please contact James Yearsley, MWH Team Leader for Water and Waste based in Hamilton; Ph 07 858 7612, Email email@example.com; or
David Annan, MWH Senior GIS Operator based in Christchurch; Ph 03 341 4702, Email firstname.lastname@example.org.)