Road Asset Management Using GIS

The Highways Department (HyD) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government has successfully upgraded its Intranet Mapping System (HyDIMS) and Road Data Maintenance System (RDMS) to next generation GIS technology, which significantly improved user experiences and operational efficiency in road maintenance and road asset management.

Graphical User Interface of HyDIMS.

Graphical User Interface of HyDIMS.

The HyD is one of the major departments to design, construct and maintain the public road system in Hong Kong. As we all know, the road network in Hong Kong is one of the most complicated and busy system in the world, it includes ordinary road, high speed road, tunnel, bridges, roadside slopes, vegetation and road lighting, etc. It is crucial for the HyD to look for an efficient and effective road information system to manipulate different kinds of road data, road asset, road condition information and road maintenance histories. Moreover, such road information system should be timely available and widely accessible in order to enable effective planning, operation and management of the maintenance works.

The HyD has introduced and applied GIS technology in managing the road information for more than a decade. The first generation HyDIMS and RDMS were both established in early 2000s. HyDIMS is a web-based geospatial information hub for dissemination of road data within the HyD. RDMS is a desktop system responsible for editing, maintenance and manipulation of road data including inventory and maintenance history of pavement, road condition data of drainage, data of Traffic Impact Assessment.

HyDIMS also integrates the data maintaining in other systems such as Public Lighting Information System and Integrated Structure Information System, etc. Apart from the in-house road data, the system is able to merge different data from other Government departments to facilitate the daily operations of the HyD. Such data includes the land status information from the Lands Department, land use data from the Planning Department, traffic information from the Transport Department, etc. In addition, HyDIMS possesses built-in online help and user guides for new users to become familiar with the system quickly.

By visualizing, generating and presenting the statistical summaries of road data, HyDIMS and RDMS effectively and efficiently work as a platform to facilitate the management and monitoring of the HyD's assets and maintenance works by their professionals.

Spatial and Textual Query Functions.

Spatial and Textual Query Functions.

In the year of 2012 and 2014, the HyD upgraded HyDIMS and RDMS respectively in order to cope with business needs and deliver improved services to the users.

The upgrade of the platform was focused in four areas: performance, ease of operation, data query functions, and data output functions. Latest technologies such as Web 2.0, map cache technology, and optimization mechanisms have been introduced in the upgrade in order to improve the performance. New or enhanced features such as comprehensive data modeling routine, concurrent access of GIS data, advanced versioning control, were brought in with the target to carry the capability of the system to a new level.

Afterwards, the new HyDIMS has an intuitive user interface, speedy and reliable system performance, speedy map display and data query function, modern web-based outlook and features, and flexible data query and output functions. The maximum number of concurrent users that the system can handle has also been doubled.

Display of Pavement Condition.

Display of Pavement Condition.

GIS has become one of the important tools for maintenance of road systems and related asset management. The new HyDIMS and RDMS, has used the latest ArcGIS 10.x technology and replaced the legacy Esri technologies such as ArcIMS. The new GIS technology exhibits richer functionalities and higher resiliency. Quicker data retrieval, efficient information sharing, easier analysis and compilation of relevant information, wider accessibility of road data have all been realized. Therefore, based on the new powerful GIS platform, the HyD is able to maintain the roads and bridges of Hong Kong with high productivity.

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