Project Team Involvement
Technology projects often experience excessive cost overruns and some of the highest failure rates due to project uncertainties, lack of coordination between
parties, and poor risk management. To accomplish the project goals B&N deconstructed the project into key elements. This helped to better understand the potential problems, define functional requirements and build consensus within the project team on cost-effective solutions.
The City’s project team included staff from the Meter Reading and Repair, Utility Billing, Engineering, Information Technology and Purchasing departments. All members attended workshops where the problems were identified, possible remedies discussed and alternatives presented to improve system reliability and sustainability.
Water Meter Testing
A random sample of the old, existing water meters were removed and bench tested to determine their accuracy. This group included nutating disk and piston-displacement type meters. The testing results turned out much better than expected, with accuracies varying +/- 3% of actual flows. This is well within the allowable AWWA standard of +/- 5%.
Most of the old water meters and registers installed in the late 1990s are no longer supported by the manufacturer. Replacement parts are not readily available or are relatively expensive. In addition, these meters were approaching their recommended 20 year life expectancy. Since this project requires the installation contractor to make appointments and enter each home or commercial property to replace the MTU, it is more cost effective to replace the meter at this same time than to re-enter the premises at a later date. The savings realized by replacing both the MTU and meter during the same appointment essentially pays for the replacement cost of the water meter. Thus, it was decided that all residential and commercial water meters would be replaced with new meters for sizes from 5/8” through 1-1/2” diameter.