• Gannett Fleming, Inc

    Innovative Model Data Integration Processes

    Pennsylvania, United States

Project Summary

This USD 125,000 project required Gannett Fleming to integrate data from Lehigh County Authority’s existing geographic information system (GIS), customer data, and supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems into Lehigh County’s new water system model. To ensure an accurate, maintainable, and sustainable model while preserving data integrity, Gannett Fleming needed an automated integration solution that allowed the model to maintain independence from the data sources.

Using Bentley’s WaterGEMS and its SCADAConnect module, Gannett Fleming established links to automate data transfer and closely integrate Lehigh County’s water system infrastructure, operational and customer data, into an effective model, requiring less financial and time commitment to maintain. The flexibility and interoperability of Bentley software enabled Gannett Fleming to coordinate customized procedures and scripts to produce an efficiently calibrated, highly accurate model, independent from the data sources, with processes that can be duplicated throughout the model’s lifecycle.

A traditional water system model development would typically involve manually drawing pipeline networks, locating and assigning customer accounts, and inputting facility data that would take Lehigh County four to eight weeks to complete. Using Bentley software to automate the integration procedures enabled Gannett to complete this process in mere days, reduced user input errors, and will save up to 40 hours of effort each time the pipeline network and demands are updated in the model by establishing a repeatable process and eliminating duplicate efforts.


Bentley solutions enabled Gannett Fleming to automate integration and establish independent links between the water system model and GIS, customer data, and the SCADA system, maintaining data integrity throughout the model’s lifecycle. Using advanced scripts and innovative WaterGEMS tools successfully addressed the challenge of integrating various data sets while allowing for a repeatable process that can be duplicated on future model updates. To establish initial model settings and assign field and comparison data, Gannett Fleming used SCADAConnect, resulting in timely data assignment and a more effective calibration process. And with WaterGEMS’ GIS-ID functionality, modelers are able to control which model elements, as opposed to the full network, are updated. With a unique registry-style string of 36 characters, GIS-ID minimizes the chance for duplication or operator error.

  • Surpassing traditional integration hurdles, the new water system model can simulate conditions in the water system, optimizing water quality and distribution in Lehigh County.
  • Gannett Fleming transferred GIS, customer, and SCADA data using WaterCAD/WaterGEMS and its SCADAConnect tool, reducing the model development time from a range of four to eight weeks, to mere days.
  • Bentley software allowed for a seamless, automated, sustainable integration process, resulting in a more accurate water system model that requires significantly less time and money to maintain.