Gov. Rick Snyder announced the results of a regional infrastructure pilot program – a roadmap for implementing a comprehensive, statewide asset management system to better manage the state’s roads, bridges, water, sewer and waste disposal pipelines, and electric, internet and telecom services.
Members who worked on the pilot project presented their findings and recommendations as to how more than 3,500 organizations that govern infrastructure statewide can better work together on modernization and improvements of our aging infrastructure – both above ground and beneath.
Asset management involves continually inventorying and assessing infrastructure conditions so that planned maintenance can be done to the service life of an asset before it has to be replaced. This process makes it more economical to maintain performance and appropriate levels of service. The result is cost savings for local communities and users, satisfaction for customers, and improved security, safety, and public health for our communities.
Michigan has over 3,350 infrastructure asset owners that operate and maintain hundreds of thousands of miles of roads, water pipes, gas lines and electric cables, all primarily on an individual basis. In addition, planning and funding cycles for different types of infrastructure are often not coordinated, and public and private infrastructure owners may not be aware of each other’s planning and decision-making processes.
Coordinating the way we plan for and manage infrastructure across and among levels of government and private utilities will reduce interruptions of infrastructure use by the public and save taxpayer money.
The pilot was tasked with creating recommendations on how the state can establish a statewide integrated asset management system that will safeguard Michigan residents and reduce costs for communities and users. It comes after the Governor in his January 2016 State of the State address announced convening a 21st Century Infrastructure Commission. This pilot project was one of the commission’s recommendations. Key recommendations include:
- A roadmap to implementing asset management in a standardized and systematic way across infrastructure types and jurisdictions creating better coordination and planning for the state’s road, water, sewer, stormwater, electric, gas, and broadband infrastructure systems.
- Ensuring all participants in the statewide asset management database at the local, regional, and state level receive a benefit for participating, make it a ‘win-win’.
- Establish a permanent Michigan Infrastructure Council to oversee planning and mapping of statewide coordinated asset management.
The joint regional pilot covered 55 percent of Michigan’s urban, suburban and rural population. Over 200 communities, regional entities, and private utilities participated in at least one area of the pilot process.
For a copy of the Asset Management Pilot Executive Summary please click here.
For a copy of the full Asset Management Pilot Report please click here.
John LaMacchia is the Assistant Director of State and Federal Affairs for the League handling transportation, infrastructure, energy and environment issues. He can be reached at [email protected] or 517-908-0303.