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3D modeling helps agencies design optimum transportation solutions

3D Utility Location Data Repository (R01A)

Challenge

Locating, protecting, and relocating underground utilities can create significant delays to construction and utility services. Reliable and accurate data on the location and depth of utilities, and a storage system from which to retrieve the data, is necessary for efficient and cost-effective project delivery. Utility data is frequently not stored in accessible formats so that it can be saved and reused for future projects, causing agencies to recreate the data. A system is needed to store and retrieve utility data using enterprise technology that works with existing agency databases and systems.

Solution

SHRP2’s 3D storage and retrieval data model will accommodate large volumes of utility data, interface with existing design software, and provide a method for organizing the data so that it can reliably be used throughout the project design phase, during construction, and on future projects. The data stored will include the horizontal and vertical location of the utilities, as well as attribute data that is needed to effectively coordinate with utility owners. These details are valuable for identifying alternative design solutions to prevent the costly relocation of the utilities.

Benefits

Storage and easy retrieval of underground utility location data provides numerous time and cost savings.

  1. The attribute data about each utility enables more efficient and productive coordination with utility owners.
  2. Knowing the location and depth of utilities enables designers to change designs to avoid costly utility relocation and delays in project delivery.
  3. During construction, contractors can pull up mapping systems that accurately display the location and depth of the utilities, so the utilities can be avoided and delays prevented.
  4. The ability to store data in a single platform can minimize the cost of data collection on future projects as well.

In the Field

State Project Description Activity Contact
Georgia Utility locating using multi-sensor platforms: prototypes for long-range RFID and active acoustic pipe locator Research Christopher Ziolkowski
Gas Technology Institute
chris.ziolkowski@gastechnology.org

Field activities also performed in Virginia during the research phase.

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