Wed, 21 Apr 2021

Using GIS technology to manage legislative requirements.

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A focused solution provides us many advantages over deploying a more generic interface intended to capture work details, including a higher user acceptance rate, lower time required to train staff, and a better interface to ensure we’re reliably capturing the details we need.

– Alex Bellak, GIS Administrator

The Challenge

The City of Troy was looking for the most efficient way to comply with the incoming requirements of Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permitting, which requires the City to maintain records of its preventative maintenance activities against its storm water system. The solution needed to be focused on tracking time and equipment used and needed to have the capability to link this tracked data to the asset. 

While normally the City would deploy its asset management software in the field to manage maintenance activities, the Streets and Drains Operations Manager for the City of Troy, wanted to ensure a workflow was developed that could be followed by staff not accustomed to using more robust software solutions. It was also important that staff experienced with the application could easily and quickly get new team members up to speed on its use. 

The Solution

The solution the City came up with to comply with the MS4 Permitting requirements leveraged VertiGIS Studio’s workflow capability to integrate with the Cityworks® asset management system. VertiGIS Studio acted as the foundation of the application. 

The application provides an easy-to-use, focused solution that guides City staff through collecting exactly what is needed during an inspection. It provides a list of equipment, staff, and options relevant to preventative maintenance of storm inlets. The City’s GIS staff were also able to use the map to symbolize drains that were recently cleaned as map features. This allows them to clearly call out structures on the map that have recently had maintenance and cleaning performed on them, thus avoiding mistakenly missing structures and performing unnecessary duplication of work. 

Marrying the capabilities of Esri and Cityworks asset management together with the powerful application development building provided by VertiGIS allows the City to deliver highly customized apps without extensive development time. 

The Result

The result of their efforts is an app that has been easily adopted by the City’s Drains Division. After its successes were made evident, VertiGIS Studio has been adopted by the Sewer Division to track maintenance in the field more easily, including keeping track of where and when work takes place. 

Their VertiGIS Studio app makes it possible to track details of individual repairs and costs that wouldn’t have been practical without the streamlined experience that workflow technology provides. By integrating with Cityworks in the back end, City staff can quickly run a workflow to order maintenance and calculate the cost and time required to complete it. 

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