PlanFirst Success Story: City of Dallas

DCA’s PlanFirst program recognizes and rewards Georgia communities that clearly demonstrate an established pattern of successfully implementing their Local Comprehensive Plan. Our PlanFirst “Success Story” series highlights these cities and counties by sharing their incredible achievements. You can view all of the communities on our Story Map.

The City of Dallas’ Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) project addresses the Local Comprehensive Plan’s opportunity for adopting policies developed by the North Georgia Metropolitan Water Planning District regarding conservation planning. This project is a success story in the sense that the City has utilized advanced technology to reduce water loss, gained the ability to give customers real-time readings in an effort to help reduce usage within homes and businesses as a conservation measure, and reduced water waste and unnecessary consumption.

The project started in 2015 and was completed in March 2020. This 5-year project consisted of 3 phases. Meter replacement, installation of satellite technology, and providing the customer with a portal to view the data.

Over the course of this project, Dallas has experienced major success in helping citizens conserve water, learn about usage, and reduce the amount of water loss within the city’s infrastructure helping maintain customer rates and lower expenses. This project places the Dallas ahead of the curve in terms of technology and prepared the infrastructure for the forecasted population growth.

In 2017, the Metropolitan Resource Management Plan was updated. In accordance with an action item from an AMI Benefit and Feasibility Study, officials were able to comply and produce data in which they could view customers with continuous usage. Dallas maintains a regular outreach program with customers flagged in an effort to help them understand water usage and reduce the amount taken into the home.

The most recent Short-Term Work Program included with the Paulding County Comprehensive Plan update (2017-2021) as another action item that consists of executing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) committing agencies to enhance, improve, and jointly create strategies for utility expansion and improvement. Paulding County Water System is in its own current process of implementing AMI and by agreement, towers within its infrastructure expand the County’s readability for AMI meters.

The same goes for the City of Dallas. Their overall coverage area increased. As growth continues to rise and the infrastructure expands, they will be prepared.

The most recent success comes from the current situation the country has faced. With the unfortunate presence of COVID-19, utilities across the nation have had to change the way operations work on a daily basis. By implementing and completing the City’s AMI project, the City of Dallas has been able to maintain daily operations within the utility system, assist customers with account issues while offices are closed, and continue to utilize conservation measures during these unexpected challenges.