Development of Wastewater Collection Network Asset Database, Deterioration Models and Management Framework
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The dynamics around managing urban infrastructure are changing dramatically. Today’s infrastructure management challenges – in the wake of shrinking coffers and stricter stakeholders’ requirements – include finding better condition assessment tools and prediction models, and effective and intelligent use of hard-earn data to ensure the sustainability of urban infrastructure systems. Wastewater collection networks – an important and critical component of urban infrastructure – have been neglected, and as a result, municipalities in North America and other parts of the world have accrued significant liabilities and infrastructure deficits. To reduce cost of ownership, to cope with heighten accountability, and to provide reliable and sustainable service, these systems need to be managed in an effective and intelligent manner. The overall objective of this research is to present a new strategic management framework and related tools to support multi-perspective maintenance, rehabilitation and replacement (M, R&R) planning for wastewater collection networks. The principal objectives of this research include: (1) Developing a comprehensive wastewater collection network asset database consisting of high quality condition assessment data to support the work presented in this thesis, as well as, the future research in this area. (2) Proposing a framework and related system to aggregate heterogeneous data from municipal wastewater collection networks to develop better understanding of their historical and future performance. (3) Developing statistical models to understand the deterioration of wastewater pipelines. (4) To investigate how strategic management principles and theories can be applied to effectively manage wastewater collection networks, and propose a new management framework and related system. (5) Demonstrating the application of strategic management framework and economic principles along with the proposed deterioration model to develop long-term financial sustainability plans for wastewater collection networks. A relational database application, WatBAMS (Waterloo Buried Asset Management System), consisting of high quality data from the City of Niagara Falls wastewater collection system is developed. The wastewater pipelines’ inspections were completed using a relatively new Side Scanner and Evaluation Technology camera that has advantages over the traditional Closed Circuit Television cameras. Appropriate quality assurance and quality control procedures were developed and adopted to capture, store and analyze the condition assessment data. To aggregate heterogeneous data from municipal wastewater collection systems, a data integration framework based on data warehousing approach is proposed. A prototype application, BAMS (Buried Asset Management System), based on XML technologies and specifications shows implementation of the proposed framework. Using wastewater pipelines condition assessment data from the City of Niagara Falls wastewater collection network, the limitations of ordinary and binary logistic regression methodologies for deterioration modeling of wastewater pipelines are demonstrated. Two new empirical models based on ordinal regression modeling technique are proposed. A new multi-perspective – that is, operational/technical, social/political, regulatory, and finance – strategic management framework based on modified balanced-scorecard model is developed. The proposed framework is based on the findings of the first Canadian National Asset Management workshop held in Hamilton, Ontario in 2007. The application of balanced-scorecard model along with additional management tools, such as strategy maps, dashboard reports and business intelligence applications, is presented using data from the City of Niagara Falls. Using economic principles and example management scenarios, application of Monte Carlo simulation technique along with the proposed deterioration model is presented to forecast financial requirements for long-term M, R&R plans for wastewater collection networks. A myriad of asset management systems and frameworks were found for transportation infrastructure. However, to date few efforts have been concentrated on understanding the performance behaviour of wastewater collection systems, and developing effective and intelligent M, R&R strategies. Incomplete inventories, and scarcity and poor quality of existing datasets on wastewater collection systems were found to be critical and limiting issues in conducting research in this field. It was found that the existing deterioration models either violated model assumptions or assumptions could not be verified due to limited and questionable quality data. The degradation of Reinforced Concrete pipes was found to be affected by age, whereas, for Vitrified Clay pipes, the degradation was not age dependent. The results of financial simulation model show that the City of Niagara Falls can save millions of dollars, in the long-term, by following a pro-active M, R&R strategy. The work presented in this thesis provides an insight into how an effective and intelligent management system can be developed for wastewater collection networks. The proposed framework and related system will lead to the sustainability of wastewater collection networks and assist municipal public works departments to proactively manage their wastewater collection networks.
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