Municipal Infrastructure Management



The Challenge

New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is responsible for managing part of the city’s huge infrastructure, including all water taps throughout the city. DEP used 5”x7” hand-written index cards for this purpose. There were over 2 million index cards, which were used to retrieve and update information on tap cards including maintenance records. Maintaining accurate information and keeping it up-to-date for over two million water taps through this manual system was highly inefficient, confusing and very expensive.

DEP needed to find a partner that could help them digitize this information in a reasonably short time and at an affordable cost. BPS was selected for indexing all details from these cards to create a digital database.



BPS Solution

BPS first conducted a thorough evaluation of the digital conversion task, and worked closely with DEP to develop an efficient process flow. BPS then conducted a large pilot test to accurately determine the required effort level. To meet the aggressive project completion schedule, BPS quickly assembled a large team and provided extensive training to the team members.

BPS processed over two million images in 18 months. The index cards were scanned on-site. The scanned images were then provided to BPS. For each card, fourteen different fields were indexed by BPS using a complex set of rules and workflow jointly developed by BPS and DEP. The resulting Oracle dump files were delivered to DEP for use in their new database.




With help from BPS, DEP was successfully able to execute a cost-effective and timely digital solution for its millions of water tap cards.

The new digital database has resulted in high accuracy of the tap card data, easy desktop access to data for office staff and field inspectors, and allowed DEP to update the database at a significantly lower cost.