As industry studies continue to highlight the issues surrounding aging water and sewer infrastructure, policy-makers at the local, state and national level of government are beginning to recognize the problem and make infrastructure renewal programs a priority.
One approach that combats the issues surrounding aging water infrastructure is asset management. This approach to infrastructure renewal helps utilities work within their capital budgets to identify areas that are most in need of repair. This “fix-it-first” approach ties into an overall renewal strategy by dealing with the rehabilitation needs proactively in order to prevent costly system failures and service disruptions, while planning the rehabilitation and assessment of an entire system over the long term.
Adopting an asset management approach not only provides immediate fiscal and service reliability benefits, but also allows the utility to understand their critical infrastructure better, which in turn enhances the ability to manage infrastructure in the long-term.
Implementing a proactive infrastructure renewal strategy is the philosophy of the Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department (WASD) as the department approaches a critical point in the life cycle of its infrastructure. By identifying and rehabilitating the most critical areas first, WASD hopes to continue providing reliable service to its customers while extending the useful life of its assets in a long term renewal program.
To read the full article in the June 2013 issue of AWWA Journal about how Miami-Dade is renewing their critical water and wastewater infrastructure using an asset management approach, click the link below and flip to page 72.