Water & Wastewater Treatment

UWLive 2016

Water & Wastewater Treatment Magazine

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Page 25 of 35

26 | Book your free ckets today www.u lityweeklive.co.uk Streetworks in progress "Streetworks need to be re-envisioned as an opportunity for ac ve customer engagement." "You've got to do it right from the very beginning. That's why you need to have a communica ons string that runs all the way through the planning process." "We're in the middle of a revolu on that's going to help us – the digital revolu on." There is now a greater emphasis in the sector on the qualita ve side of customer experience, what's important is how customers feel rather than just coun ng numbers." They cost a fortune, the public hates them, but the country couldn't func on without them: this year U lity Week Live puts the focus on streetworks. Behind the temporary traffi c lights and "road closed" signs, quietly and slowly there is a revolu on going on. Streetworks are adop ng new technologies to make things safer, quicker and cheaper. Gas, electricity and running water are essen als for modern life, and essen al to the job of maintaining them are streetworks, with their hi-vis-clad engineers keeping the lights on, the gas fl owing and the water running. However, to many motorists and householders, this work is notable only for the disrup on it causes. A report commissioned by the Na onal Joint U li es Group (NJUG) and conducted by PA Consul ng recently revealed that u li es undertook 1.5 million streetworks in 2014/15, which equates to six million man-hours of road occupa on (see Bob Gallienne's column, right). Paying for this work to maintain a safe and reliable supply of water, electricity and gas cost u lity companies between £1.5 and £2 billion in 2014/15, according to the NJUG report. Meanwhile, the Department for Transport es mates that streetworks cost the UK economy £4.3 billion a year. U li es, contractors and highway authori es are working to minimise this impact, and have achieved a signifi cant shi in the way streetworks are conducted – from introducing innova ve no-dig technologies (see p26) through to the development of cloud technologies. Together, these have cut the cost and dura on of streetworks, in some cases by 90 per cent. The best of these technologies will be on display at U lity Week Live, together with a special conference programme exploring the challenges facing u li es as they seek to improve streetworks, and the solu ons that are emerging. The Streetworks Village is situated between stands D48-D60 in the exhibi on hall. Jacob Tompkins, Managing director, Waterwise Andy Hunt, Head of innova on, Morrison U lity Services Graham Bond, Streetworks Manager, Wales & West U li es Leah Fry, Head of customer experience programme, Severn Trent Water In quotes

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