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Leveraging GIS to Assign Sewer Pipe Criticality Saves Time and Effort and Assists with Capital Planning

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Lee County Utilities (LCU) began implementing a comprehensive Asset Management Program in November of 2008 to improve the management of their over 700 million dollars worth of water, wastewater and reclaimed water assets. To speed up the asset management implementation process and provide meaningful results quickly, Malcolm Pirnie and LCU formulated a fast track approach that would complete the planning and design of the program in less than a year, would focus solely on a small portion of the system, Waterway Estates, and would fully evaluate the small pilot area in terms of asset condition, criticality, risk, renewal and replacement funding, capital project prioritization and potential rate impacts. The Waterway Estates system was chosen for the pilot because it contains representative water, wastewater and reclaimed water assets of a variety of ages, which was critical to be able to extrapolate the results to the rest of the system.

The pilot project included a detailed criticality analysis to address the relative consequence of failure of all assets located within Waterway Estates, including plant and pipe assets. Once the pilot was successfully completed, the analysis was applied to all plant and pipes in LCU's system. This paper will focus on the consistent scoring methodology that was developed through a series of workshops to address pipe assets, how the Geographic Information System (GIS) was leveraged to perform the assessment, and how the data is begin utilized for risk analysis and planning. This methodology was based on existing industry standards, where applicable, and customized to LCU's specific asset types and conditions. The initial analysis began in December of 2008 and was completed in March of 2009 for the pilot area. Ongoing activities beyond the pilot area were completed in April of 2011.

Keywords: Asset Management; Criticality Assessment; Renewal & Replacement Planning; Risk Assessment

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2011

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