Brush routing in the Village of Skokie

​The Village of Skokie trustees recently voted to decrease landscape
waste pickup service for the entire village. While not eliminating the
service all together, the village decided that residents must call or
sign up via the village website to receive brush pickup. In addition,
the village would no longer pick up landscape waste. The village is now
promoting the mulching of grass since it no longer accepts grass during
curbside pick up.

Leading up to this decision, the Village Manager’s Office was in
contact with the Geographic Information System (GIS) Specialist who
recommended a few different options for producing maps of addresses that
will be serviced. During these conversations, it was concluded that
creating a route for each service zone would be most beneficial.

First, the village was cut into service zones – areas that offered
opportunity for continuous movement and areas where no major street
needed to be crossed. The Refuse Superintendent, Paul Brzozowski with
help from the GIS Specialist, created the zones. After the zones were
completed, it was necessary to determine if the final product would be a
map, a spreadsheet with addresses or both. It was concluded that a map
for each zone and a document containing each address with its associated
zone would be best.

The Village of Skokie GIS Specialist then worked to automate the
workflow used in creating final product. This was completed by using a
model with parameters (addresses and zones). The GIS Specialist, with
the help of Jan Teisinger, GIS Analyst for MGP Inc, was able to create a
model that performed over an hour’s worth of manual work in about ten
minutes by automating the process. In addition to automating the bulk of
the data work, exporting the maps to PDF was automated. A map book was
created to export all maps in series, thus eliminating time needed to do
this task manually. Both of these automations decreased the time needed
for the Brush Routing project by over 50%.

In the end, the Brush Routing process has become easier and faster as
time goes by. Over 600 service addresses can now be loaded into the GIS
and a final product can be rendered in 30-45 minutes. This process
keeps evolving and continues to produce quality products for the end
user. Using GIS, the village has kept its Brush Pickup service while
eliminating extra driving costs associated with areas that do not
require service

Brush routing in the Village of Skokie

​The Village of Skokie trustees recently voted to decrease landscape
waste pickup service for the entire village. While not eliminating the
service all together, the village decided that residents must call or
sign up via the village website to receive brush pickup. In addition,
the village would no longer pick up landscape waste. The village is now
promoting the mulching of grass since it no longer accepts grass during
curbside pick up.

Leading up to this decision, the Village Manager’s Office was in
contact with the Geographic Information System (GIS) Specialist who
recommended a few different options for producing maps of addresses that
will be serviced. During these conversations, it was concluded that
creating a route for each service zone would be most beneficial.

First, the village was cut into service zones – areas that offered
opportunity for continuous movement and areas where no major street
needed to be crossed. The Refuse Superintendent, Paul Brzozowski with
help from the GIS Specialist, created the zones. After the zones were
completed, it was necessary to determine if the final product would be a
map, a spreadsheet with addresses or both. It was concluded that a map
for each zone and a document containing each address with its associated
zone would be best.

The Village of Skokie GIS Specialist then worked to automate the
workflow used in creating final product. This was completed by using a
model with parameters (addresses and zones). The GIS Specialist, with
the help of Jan Teisinger, GIS Analyst for MGP Inc, was able to create a
model that performed over an hour’s worth of manual work in about ten
minutes by automating the process. In addition to automating the bulk of
the data work, exporting the maps to PDF was automated. A map book was
created to export all maps in series, thus eliminating time needed to do
this task manually. Both of these automations decreased the time needed
for the Brush Routing project by over 50%.

In the end, the Brush Routing process has become easier and faster as
time goes by. Over 600 service addresses can now be loaded into the GIS
and a final product can be rendered in 30-45 minutes. This process
keeps evolving and continues to produce quality products for the end
user. Using GIS, the village has kept its Brush Pickup service while
eliminating extra driving costs associated with areas that do not
require service