Since the late 1970s The Village of Mundelein, IL has aggressively replaced older ductile iron water main with PVC watermain. This has resulted in a safer water supply and a lower maintenance cost water system. There are still a few areas of the Village with older ductile iron water mains and these areas also tend to have the highest frequency of breaks.
The Mundelein Public Works Department desired an effective way to show the Village Board that they need to dedicate funding to replace the older pipes in these few remaining areas. They contracted the Geographic Information System (GIS) Office about creating a map the shows the locations of breaks and the age of the pipes. The GIS Office created a map showing the density of water main repairs, which displayed breaks grouped in a few specific areas. Next they symbolized the water mains by year and material to show which ones are new or have been replaced and which water mains are still original.
When the water main repair density information, which showed which pipes where new or replaced, was visually compared to the general water main data, it was immediately clear that all the repair issues were located in areas that still contained original water mains. Now the Department of Public Works had a visual display that clearly showed that the primary problem areas are those that contain most of the older water mains. Public Works intends to use this map as a visual resource during future council meetings, where they plan to request funding from the Village Board for replacing these problem mains.