Services

| Subsurface Utility Engineering | 3D Survey and Design | Utility Conflict Management | Utility Coordination | Construction Management | Geophysical SweepStandby Monitoring Services | GEO.works™ |

UMS engineers provide utility engineering services including SUE, utility conflict management, utility coordination and construction oversight of utility relocation. We bring specialized utility expertise to manage and minimize utility risk to your project.

UMS’s growth and success is strictly due to our expertise, experience, and proficiency in SUE, as well as the ability to utilize a wide array of sophisticated technology to best accomplish the task at hand. Established in 2002, UMS has quickly become a leader in the Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE) industry. It has current contracts providing SUE services for projects involving state transportation departments in the upper mid-west and western United States

 

 

Subsurface Utility Engineering

The SUE process is now considered an industry standard for design and is considered a best practice by many organizations including: FHWA, Common Ground Alliance, APWA, Office of Pipeline Safety, and many city and state transportation departments.

Adherence to acquisition and depiction standards along with the use of records research, geophysical methods, vacuum excavation, and land survey combined in a phased approach and guided by professional judgment, has often been referred to as Subsurface Utility Engineering or SUE. SUE is a complex and important series of engineering tasks and associated responsibilities established to manage risk, promote efficiency, and reduce costs. The utility mapping and designation of quality levels provides the data set for which the SUE process begins. SUE involves utilizing qualified utility data sets to conduct the following engineering activities:

  • systematically identify, define, categorize, and prioritize apparent conflicts between proposed designs and existing utilities;
  • optimize design development and proactively mitigate utility conflicts;
  • identify and accommodate other infrastructure planned betterments and new installations;
  • conduct effective utility coordination in which resolutions to conflicts are derived that serve the best interests of the public and all stakeholders involved;
  • develop construction plans and bid documents which concisely identify and provide details of outstanding conflicts for construction planning, bidding, and execution; and
  • encourage value engineering and mitigation of cost implications to all infrastructure systems which provide service to commerce, government, and the general public.

 

 

 

 

3D Survey and Design

UMS specialized SUE methodologies include: 1) state of the art 2D and 3D geophysical mapping; 2) proprietary data management technologies; 3) progressive conflict analysis, clash detection, and resolution engineering; and 4) advanced coordination and agreement strategies.  Our proven methodology optimizes utility coordination and conflict resolution engineering and includes the following activities: utility designating and locating per CI/ASCE 38-02, conflict identification, value engineering, cost estimates, agreements, quality control, scheduling, risk reduction, safety analyses improvements, and project buy-off.

3d utility mapping

UMS’s geophysical toolbox includes the new Optimal Ranging SPAR 300© electromagnetic induction system which derives 3D alignment data (elevation tied to project control) for conductive utilities, including appropriate error metadata.  UMS use of the SPAR 300 over past 4 years verifies the tool can provide highly valuable, continuous 3D profile data at a fraction of the cost of discrete vacuum excavated test holes.  Combining SPAR 300 and ground penetrating radar records with test hole ground-truth data enables UMS engineers to develop reliably qualified 3D MicroStation CADD depictions and 3D model visualizations of buried infrastructure that can effectively be referenced into proposed 3D plans for clash detection, coordination, design and construction planning using Bentley’s new SUDA CADD application.

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Utility Conflict Management

  • Conflict assessment
  • Utility workshops
  • Conflict resolution Engineering

UMS has developed customized conflict matrices for managing utility conflicts from preliminary design through construction. As costs for utility work continue to rise and computerized technology continues to improve, the industry trend will continue toward increased value engineering efforts which promote conflict avoidance measures. Conflict matrices enable engineers and utility coordinators to track, manage, and work through the complexities inherent with utility related issues and derive optimal resolutions.

Ultimately, a value engineering effort is performed to evaluate and objectively determine a recommended treatment of utility conflicts on a case by case basis. Schedule, cost, risk, and legal rights are included and factored into the evaluation process.

 

 

Utility Coordination

UMS provides expertise in utility coordination from the preliminary design stage through design and construction. This involves constant and clear communication with the project owners, project designers, and the utility industry. Early and often coordination throughout the life of the project results in mutual trust and cooperation between project owner and the utility industry.

 

 

Construction Management

UMS brings intimate knowledge of the utility issues on a project through to the construction stage. This is obtained through the SUE, Utility coordination and utility conflict management processes. We are able to have utility issues resolved up front during design so that the project can continue with minimal schedule disruption caused by utility surprises.

 

 

Geophysical Sweep

UMS performs geophysical sweeps for utility infrastructure as a damage prevention measure to support boring, trenching, excavations, and other ground disturbance activities. Pipeline projects may cross areas in proximity of congested active utility infrastructure, including telecommunications, water mains, irrigation systems, water treatment mains, septic drain fields, storm water drain pipes, buried power, natural gas, crude and refined petroleum pipelines, etc. An essential and prudent strategy for clearing areas prior to excavation or drilling includes conducting a utility mapping campaign in accordance with CI/ASCE 38-02 “Standard Guidelines for the Collection and Depiction of Subsurface Utility Data”.   This is a systematic detection and mapping of existing utility infrastructure which produces a reliable data set for assessing risk and ensuring appropriate measures are planned and executed to protect active facilities from damage, and safeguard workers and the general public.

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Standby Monitoring Services

Every year thousands of buried utilities are unintentionally damaged by excavators.  Standby Monitoring is a practice implemented, in addition to the Call Before You Dig (Call 811) “One Call” notification system, by a utility owner or its representatives to further prevent excavation damages to their facilities.

The practice consists of:

  • Identifying One Call tickets for excavations that have a high probability of conflicting with a particular buried utility installation.
  • Having qualified personnel meet on site with excavators associated with those high probability tickets to discuss Best Practices for excavating in close proximity to buried utilities.
  • Observing and documenting with photos and written notes excavation activities which either cross or are in close proximity to buried utilities.
  • Observing and documenting with photos and written notes the exposure and subsequent burial of utilities exposed during excavation.
  • Continually coordinating communication between the excavator, the locator, and the utility.

To enhance the capture of Standby Monitoring documentation UMS has teamed with Berenice International Group s.r.l. to develop a GEO.Works WebGIS tablet application, GEOutility™, which allows documentation, management and sharing of excavation coordinates, photos, exposed utility reports and written notes associated with standby monitoring activities.  Each Standby report is stored in real-time within a secure, web based data system.  GEOutility’s query options can be used to generate reports for viewing on a desk based computer or in the field using a Web enabled tablet.

UMS only provides qualified experienced personnel to execute Standby Monitoring.

UMS has been contracted with Northwestern Energy (NWE) to implement a pilot Standby Monitoring program in Helena and Bozeman, Montana.

Since launching the Standby Monitoring in 2015 within the Helena, Montana area, NWE has experienced a significantly lower number of third party damages to their natural gas distribution system and a positive return on investment.  You can read about the UMS and NWE Standby Monitoring program in the Winter issue of 2016 Damage Prevention Professional.

For 2016 NWE has contracted with UMS to not only continue Standby Monitoring in the Helena Valley, but to expand the program to include the Bozeman region.

If you are interested in implementing a Standby program for your facilities please contact Jerry Davis..

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GEO.works™

UMS, Berenice and Prisma Solutions have developed and are introducing innovative applications and processes to markedly enhance management of all traffic controls and utility infrastructure facilities residing within public right of way. The solutions encompass a myriad of concerns including utility permitting, traffic coordination, traffic control plans, intelligent traffic systems, utility rediscovery, utility conflict analytics and resolution engineering, utility agreements, integration of utility work into mainline construction via innovative contracting, inspection, and 3-D digital as-built data acquisition, management and storage.

This is the only comprehensive 360 methodology in existence to correct utility infrastructure pain points for both project development and life cycle management of roads and traffic.

GEOnoesis™ manages permitting of all type right of way occupations and is integrated with GIP™ (Graph Integration Platform) to provide a complete solution for administering multimodal networks, roads, bicycle lanes, pedestrian walks. Moreover the system optimizes traffic diversions for utility installation and maintenance activities, enables control of work quality, and the implementation of temporary and permanent traffic plans with all related limitations (i.e. speed limits, max weight and height etc.).

These software technologies and platforms are integrated within a single framework called GEO.works™ and designed to optimize workflows, data storage, and provide a single dashboard and access portal for information associated with all road and utility infrastructure located within public right of way. The merging of GEOnoesis and GIP enables automating the updates of graph and traffic limitations by means of a single web application that can be accessed by many different departments. Accordingly all assets and traffic limitations are managed in an easy to use environment, to avoid duplications and mistakes.

GEOfeature™ completes the asset management of public right of way with the collection, storage and administration of standardized 3D digital utility data. GEOfeature provides a home for standardized as-built information on newly installed infrastructure which can be later used by utility engineers for planning, design, damage prevention, emergency response, etc. GEOfeature is integrated with GEOdaisia™ to manage and resolve all design conflicts existing and proposed utility infrastructure. GEOdaisia provides a unique web conferencing system for addressing conflicts with all stakeholders, including 3rd party utility owners, in a systematic, proactive and transparent manner. GEOimport™ facilitates collection of new as-built data in seconds using a high precision GPS enabled tablet device.

All construction activities are constantly monitored through GEOnoesis and GEOutility™ to control quality of traffic diversions, damage prevention measures, as-built collection, road restoration, etc. The ability to coordinate right of way occupation work activities with GEOnoesis mitigates public disruptions as well as reduces multiple cuts along the same segment of road.

We are available to show the complete methodology to MNDOT to demonstrate how it can improve right of way management performance, communication, transparency, efficiency, safety, reduce costs, decrease traffic flow disruptions and eliminate damages to utility facilities.

 

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