Public Utilities GIS: Promises and Pitfalls

by Charles S. Hodge, Boyle Eng Corp, Newport Beach, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computing in Civil and Building Engineering


Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and public utilities are natural partners. Municipal public utilities departments and other public works agencies rely on geographical information from many sources: several kinds of maps, survey information, cadastral data, as-built infrastructure plans, maintenance records, and a wide assortment of other information. Keeping these documents up to date and accessible to the public and their own staff takes considerable effort and money. Putting this information on computers makes sense and many public utilities agencies are actively seeking to acquire and use GIS as quickly as possible. This paper discusses the promises and pitfalls of public utilities GIS: It also suggests a method of producing usable professional GIS for these agencies based on realistic expectations and a method of least-energy application.

Subject Headings: Lifeline systems | Geographic information systems | Public information programs | Information management | Systems management | Information systems | Local government | Public private partnership

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