Bona Vista Water District is a special service district that provides culinary water to customers throughout western Weber County, including parts of Ogden, West Haven, Harrisville, Farr West, Plain City, and Marriott-Slaterville. Bona Vista is one of the largest commercial water systems in Weber County.
Bona Vista employees know their system very well but recognized that just having the system mapped in their minds was not a solid long-term strategy. In 2011, Bona Vista management began to discuss the need for a comprehensive GIS to track and maintain information critical to the operation of the water system. However, they also recognized that with a staff unfamiliar with GIS and limited budget available for mapping, a well-crafted strategy would be necessary in order to be successful.
Gateway Mapping Inc. (GMI) worked with Bona Vista Employees to build a GIS that was well suited to their needs. Recognizing the challenges faced by the District, GMI employees worked directly with Bona Vista to come up with a phased approach to facilitate both budgetary and training needs. The phases included the following:
- GPS – Bona Vista purchased a mapping-grade GPS unit, and GMI staff trained Bona Vista staff on its usage. Bona Vista staff collected water valves, meters, and fire hydrants throughout the district using the unit.
- Mapping – As data was collected, GMI mapped the water pipes in GIS. Much of the mapping was done in on-site work sessions with knowledgeable staff. This saved both time and money by avoiding extra back-and-forth forth correspondence.
- Training– As the GIS was built, GMI staff trained select Bona Vista staff members on its use. By slowing adding more tasks as the system became more complicated, Bona Vista staff was comfortable with the level of training complexity, and they were able to make significant technical progress over time.
- Web/Mobile Access – As the GIS was completed, the primary platform of the GIS was shifted to ArcGIS Online, making the GIS accessible to all staff members throughout the District who needed it.
- Fully operational GIS, used for both inventory and maintenance work
- Staff has increased in technical prowess; staff members have developed skills in both collecting data in the field using GPS, and the ability to maintain their GIS
Fully mobile and web-accessible GIS. Bona Vista staff use the system daily both in the office via web browsers and in the field via mobile devices.