AnsweredAssumed Answered

Snow Plowing and Salting Routing

Question asked by nfidl083 on Dec 13, 2016
Latest reply on Jun 29, 2017 by erodenberg-esristaff

Hi everyone,


I am really hoping that there is someone out there who has a similar problem to me and/or can help me find a solution to this problem.


I work for a large municipality and my primary role is to create and maintain our mapping datasets. This question is specifically related to snow plowing and salting operations that we undertake.


In the past, the standard practice has been to create beat maps for each of our pieces of equipment for our winter operations. These maps would generally consider the beat length, distance from the yard/depot, type of equipment, road class etc. Our maps have always been fine, but we are now running into issues with our contractors related to our choice of routing. Typically we would suggest areas of the beat where they should start, but we would never give turn by turn directions, or show directional lines on a map. 


This lack of routing information has consistently proven to be inefficient and now I am tasked with coming to a solution to this problem. I have been asked to route each piece of equipment in our contracts - we are talking close to 500 different routes. My predecessors in my role would draw lines on our maps to indicate the routing, but this proved to be incredibly time intensive, and when our routes change due to the addition of new streets/additional pieces of equipment, etc, the routing has to be done again. 


I do not have a license to the Network Analyst extension, however, if the case could be made, I am certain our department would cough up the cash to make it work, but first I NEED to know if this extension can do what I am looking for. 


This is the typical scenario:


I create a route for a snow plow (a list of streets that must be completed by this piece of equipment); ideally it only makes right hand turns (not a deal breaker if it doesn't); it must leave from the yard to the designated start of the beat and it must go on every street identified on the beat, and it must travel on each side of the street (i.e. to clear the driveways for each side of the street). Ideally it would create some sort of line routing that can be read on a map for the operator to see in the cab of his vehicle - even better would be the ability to export the route and upload it to something like Google Maps or a Tom Tom where the route can be dictated to the operator. 


I realize that I may be asking for something that does not exist, but hey, it's 2016 and (almost) anything is possible!


Thoughts? Ideas? Alternative suggestions?


I appreciate it!