What Infrastructure Planning Looks Like

June 21, 2016

Governor Snyder’s Executive Directive seeks multi–agency cooperation on infrastructure projects

Have you ever seen a brand new road torn up to replace a pipe? Did you think to yourself, “Couldn’t they plan that better?”

The answer: Probably! Through his Executive Directive, Governor Snyder thinks infrastructure planning among road agencies, municipalities, and utilities can improve, too.

On May 13, he issued an executive directive to MDOT calling for more collaboration with local governments and utility companies on future projects. The reason echoes lessons learned from the Flint water crisis—more transparency and collaboration are crucial to reducing infrastructure costs and disasters. He explains, “Modernizing Michigan’s aging infrastructure requires significant investment, and we can minimize costs and disruption by enhancing collaboration on planning and projects. This directive aims to identify those opportunities where we can upgrade water and sewer infrastructure at the same time roads and bridges are being done.”

How are we going to do this?

Collectively we haven’t been thinking enough about water and sewer pipes falling apart, or how we will pay to replace them.

Fortunately, technology now plays a huge role in improving infrastructure planning.

In Michigan’s future, we will:

  • Store condition data about every pipe in a community’s system in layered, ‘smart’ maps
  • Know locations of underground pipes before digging
  • Have utility crews that can update the maps via computer tablets whenever anything changes
  • Have data to objectively identify potential pipe replacement and to help us coordinate multi–agency activities, minimizing the long–term ownership cost of our infrastructure

Today, we are improving on yesterday’s planning and we have tools that let us coordinate more. Fiscal sustainability means efficient use of money, such as treating pipes and roads as one system. At Prein&Newhof we are hopeful that Governor Snyder’s executive directive helps Michigan avoid digging up the same road twice in five years!

 


Recent

View More

P&N mourns the loss of Ed Prein, Co-Founder

We are saddened by the recent death of Prein&Newhof co-founder, H. Edward Prein. Our thoughts and prayers go to the Prein family during this time. Ed will be remembered for his vision, wisdom, strong technical skills, and committed service to our clients, all of which helped to grow our business. In 1969, Ed Prein, PE, PS and Tom Newhof, PE established Prein&Newhof, a […]

Learn More >

USDA-RD funding options available for water projects

The United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development has several programs to assist businesses and municipalities with infrastructure issues in rural areas. The USDA–RD Michigan office recently announced that they have additional appropriation from the federal office for its Water and Waste Disposal Grant and Low Interest Loan Program. This program provides funding for clean and reliable drinking […]

Learn More >

MDNR offering $3.6M in grants to fight Invasive Species

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is now accepting proposals for projects that will help prevent and control invasive species. Through the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program (MISGP), $3.6 million is expected to be available to applicants in 2018. The program is part of a statewide initiative to prevent and control species that can cause […]

Learn More >

Cherry Capital Airport Receives MDOT-AERO Award

Congratulations to the Northwestern Regional Airport Commission at Cherry Capital Airport (TVC) in Traverse City on its recognition as Airport of the Year by MDOT–AERO (Michigan Department of Transportation–Aeronautics) for its outstanding efforts associated with the rehabilitation and extension of Runway 10/28. Prein&Newhof’s airport team worked for 10+ years with TVC staff, the Northwestern Regional Airport Commission, […]

Learn More >