Asset Management Research Needs Roadmap
Around the world, water and wastewater utilities are establishing asset management plans. These long-range plans guide the effective use of water supply facilities and how to replace or upgrade aging infrastructure. To help North American utilities identify water and wastewater needs, that research can help solve, the Water Research Foundation commissioned the Asset Management Research Needs Roadmap Project.
HDR with Westin Engineering, American Water, and asset management consultant John Fortin was contracted to develop the Roadmap. HDR recruited a panel of 30 experts, from inside and outside the water and wastewater industries, and convened a workshop. During the workshop, utilities, private sector researchers and academics reviewed asset management practices and began formulating suggestions for a long-term asset management research program.
In addition to identifying research needs, the Roadmap started forging alignments among the EPA, water and wastewater utilities, industry associates, and non-governmental research associations to further asset management goals. To produce an accurate asset management profile, the participants from Alaska to Florida, including representatives from Los Angeles and Washington D.C. broke groups to devise six critical initiatives:
- Program management and organizational structure
- Asset management framework/models for organizations
- Risk management
- Condition assessment and performance monitoring
- Decision making for capital improvement plans and replacement and renewal
- Operations and maintenance practices
After the workshop, the Roadmap team conducted more focused readiness reviews in Tacoma, Wash., Cleveland, Denver and York, Ontario. These readiness reviews assessed the asset management status of these utilities and presented a conceptual, tailored plan to facilitate best management practices. The intelligence and data from the workshop, reviews and subsequent studies provides a summary view of North American asset management. The final Roadmap report identifies information gaps, proposes research projects and develops funding strategies.