Home > Services > Mapping
Mapping Banner

Explore, Assess and Understand Collection Infrastructure

No process for utilities is more basic than the production and maintenance of maps; nor can comprehensive preventative maintenance or I & I abatement programs exist apart from detailed maps. While many communities either assume or perceive that all of their collection assets are mapped accurately, there are often opportunities for improvement before an effective preventive maintenance program can be executed.

FloCis has the experience with multiple projects and can provide training and consulting expertise. We encourage any community who wants to begin a preventative maintenance program to contact us as the preliminary step to evaluating their potential mapping needs.

While maps need to be electronically managed, we are not advocates for a geographic information system or mapping that is accurate beyond one walking stride. The fundamental requirements recommended are:

  • Maps need to be geographically accurate enough for maintenance staff to find all assets quickly during routine inspections or in response to customer complaints.
  • Maps should display every asset in the collection system. A drawer full of incomplete drawings and subdivision maps are not enough to get a complete layout of the assets.
  • In addition to every sanitary sewer asset, maps should display the locations of every storm system structure or pipe as an overlay in the same CAD file.
  • Maps should be electronic and the files should be the property of the owner of the collection system and not housed at an engineering firm. It is often prohibitively expensive to have engineering firms manage comprehensive mapping projects for most small communities.
  • An experienced CAD operator who is trained to manage the mapping software should be available for future revisions to the collection system.
Mapping Computer Work Being Done Mapping Being Done in the Field

If a quality map and database does not exist for a community or is not available, they should budget approximately 1% of the replacement cost for the collection system to have the first comprehensive map created. However, there are other ways that costs can be reduced. Public servants, school teachers on break and other temporary employees can be recruited to assist with the mapping verification projects when using the FloCis mapping methodology.

FloCis recommends the software program "Global Mapper" as a low-cost package - $ 350 for a single user, with discounts for multiple users. We also suggest using aerial photographic surveys as a tool to provide a georeferenced base map to start the project. Many states have free aerial photography databases available to communities as well as other free or low cost maps via the internet.