Itron Inc. has announced an agreement to provide the City of Ft. Wayne with technology to automate data collection from 75,000 water meters in northeastern Indiana.
ABB Water Meters of Ocala, Florida, has been selected as the lead contractor for the automation project and will provide 65,000 new ABB absolute encoder water meters equipped with Itron automatic meter reading (AMR) modules, as well as project management services, to the City of Ft. Wayne.
United Metering of Herrington Park, N.J., will install 55,000 of the new AMR-equipped meters, and the City of Ft. Wayne will install the remaining 10,000 new ABB meters and upgrade an additional 10,000 ABB meters already in the field with Itron AMR technology. The majority of the meters will be automated over a period of one year.
"We're constantly exploring ways to reduce our costs while improving customer service, and the efficiency gains made possible by Itron technology will enable us to do that," said Ted Rhinehart, Ft. Wayne city utilities director. "In addition, the accuracy of the system means we'll virtually eliminate inaccurate readings and estimated bills. We're looking forward to getting started on a very beneficial project for both the city and our customers."
"Ft. Wayne has joined an expanding list of water utilities and municipalities that are addressing key operational and strategic objectives with Itron automation technology," said John Hengesh, vice president and general manager of Itron's Water and Public Power Business Unit. "We're excited to be working with ABB Water Meters and United Metering on this project and we look forward to being an integral part of Ft. Wayne's future success."
Once the system is deployed, Ft. Wayne meter readers will use vehicles equipped with Itron computers and radio frequency (RF) transceivers to collect meter data accurately and efficiently simply by driving past the metered property, eliminating the need for meter readers to access customer properties.