Utility relocation that has been going on in Asheville’s River Arts District is being done in coordination with the City’s River Arts District Transportation Improvement Project (RADTIP).
When it comes to regional utility and communications firms, Asheville’s Public Works and Water Resources departments take a collaborative approach to the growth going in in Asheville.
Every six weeks, representatives from Duke Energy, NCDOT, PSNC, AT&T and the Metropolitan Sewerage District gather in the Public Works’ first floor conference room for the Infrastructure Task Force, where they trade information about upcoming projects with an ear toward efficiency opportunities.
Around the table, people talk how to do better project coordination and public notification.
Public Works developed a map that lists projects. The department then made that map available to these partner organizations.
“We share one another’s capital improvement projects with the idea of trying to match up timing so we can coordinate projects,” said Public Works Director Greg Shuler. “For example, if a partner agency will be working on a road next year and we have a project on that road this year, we either wait or ask them if they can accelerate.”
That keeps crews from having to tear up the same portion of road two years in a row.
Projects that have benefited have included the River Arts District Transportation Improvement Project (RADTIP), the Cedar Street Bridge repair in east Asheville, annual road resurfacing and the Hendersonville sidewalk project.
“Economies of scale have been realized and maybe we can partner on who pays for resurfacing,” said Shuler.
With the bond projects over the next seven years, coordination is going to be even more critical. At the same time, Mission Hospitals have their towers under construction, and A-B Tech continues its growth, having just finished a building that incorporated new sidewalks.
So far, utility relocation in the River Arts District for RADTIP has been the most visible coordination effort, with PSNC and Duke Energy as primary partners. Look for more collaboration as the Infrastructure Task Force continues its work.