Walsall Council, its highways partner Tarmac and software developer KaarbonTech are celebrating after scooping a prestigious national award for an innovative tool that improves drainage maintenance and reduces flood risk.
The partners secured the Asset Management Award at the annual Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) Awards ceremony.
The new collaboratively developed digital system allows the Council and other asset owners including Severn Trent Water to instantly share and communicate detailed information about the town’s network of drains and gulleys.
This has resulted in maintenance teams being able to identify drainage faults before they become more serious, resolve issues faster and reduce the chances of disruption on local roads due to flooding. The success of the innovation has meant the technology has since been shared with other councils and water utility companies across the country.
Peter Hyde, Highway Services director at Tarmac said: “Gulleys aren’t known for glamour, but this award recognises how our new technology is delivering significant and measurable improvements to the borough’s roads.
“For ten years we have been responsible for over 500 miles of roads across Walsall, and the strength of our partnership with the Council has seen us achieve considerable savings by regularly introducing innovative techniques and modern processes.”
The partnership between Walsall Council and Tarmac to deliver an efficient highways maintenance programme was founded in 2009 with the strategic objectives of reducing costs, failure rates and protracted timescales for repairs.
As well as providing drainage maintenance, Tarmac is also responsible for services including pothole repairs, carriageway surfacing, winter maintenance and highways emergency support.
Councillor Adrian Andrew, Deputy Leader of Walsall Council said:
“This is a great example of how the highways maintenance team has been moving towards digital transformation and embracing emerging technologies to deliver an efficient and effective service and maximise the best use of resources.”
“We are going to build on this success and aim to make the service even better for local residents.”