Earlier this year, Kelly Zylstra, WWU Operations Manager, Chris Walter, WWU Technical Services Manager, Katie Richardson, Greeley and Hansen Program Manager, and Ted Bluver, Greeley and Hansen Civil Engineer, presented at the American Water Works Association (AWWA) national convention. They shared their expertise with utilities and water technology companies from across the country, showcasing Waukesha’s program to build a new sustainable water supply.
With large infrastructure projects, communication plays a major role. Zylstra and Richardson outlined essential steps that begin long before construction starts. They discussed the importance of informing community officials, businesses, and the general public throughout the different phases of the Program, including preliminary design, construction, and water transition. Topics included water quality testing, pipeline route and design, and what to expect during construction.
As emphasized in the presentation, communication and outreach while building new water infrastructure is multi-tiered, complex, and crucial from the planning phase until after the new, clean water source is established.
The GWA team began their outreach early, and it will continue to be a high priority. Various efforts include direct communication with public officials in all communities affected, along with hosting open houses for the public to learn about the Program and ask questions. GWA continues to provide multiple platforms for people to get information, including Facebook, Twitter, GWA Website, and phone support by the Waukesha Water Utility (262-521-5272).