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IDS New Asset Modelling Tool Wins IPWEA Excellence Award

03 December 2020

Infrastructure Decision Support (IDS) have tonight won the coveted Excellence In Maximising Asset Performance Award at the annual IPWEA NZ Excellence Awards which were held in Dunedin at the Dunedin Centre.

Receiving the award, (centre) Andy Bartlett and Julie Muir from CODC, alongside Dr Theuns Henning, CEO of IDS, flanked by project team members.

IDS is a non-profit organisation set up by the local industry to support infrastructure decision makers.

Dr Theuns Henning, IDS, CEO, and lecturer at the University of Auckland was thrilled with the win but quick to point out that it was very much a team effort; “We simply could not have developed the unsealed roads modelling tool (the focus of our award entry) without the support of Central Otago District Council (CODC) with whom we jointly submitted our entry. A number of research students from the University of Auckland also made valuable contributions.

“Our industry partners such as CODC were able to bring their ‘real life’ experience to the project specifications brief but were also there as a sense check throughout the development process to ensure that the tool we were developing would offer meaningful benefits to our end users. We are proud that this tool has been developed by Kiwis for Kiwi conditions with the help of our Canadian software partners, Deighton.

“Unsealed roads play an important role in the New Zealand economy. More than 40% of the local roading networks in New Zealand are unsealed, and yet 80% of our primary industry economic trips start on these roads. Previously there were no modelling tools available designed specifically with unsealed roads at their core but merely sealed road tools that had been modified and really didn’t fit with New Zealand’s needs.

A quintessential kiwi unsealed road: Spring-time on the unsealed roads of the Maniototo District, Central Otago – photo credit: David Wall

“One of the key issues for council decisionmakers is weighing up community needs vs available budget and balancing this alongside other factors such as material sourcing, customer feedback and cultural considerations. Our new tool uses data to optimise asset performance and deliver positive community outcomes which is the end goal. To gain this sort of recognition from our IPWEA peers validates IDS’ purpose for being. Personally, having devoted much of my professional life to unsealed roads modelling I feel incredibly humbled.”

For more information about the IDS Unsealed Roads Modelling Tool visit

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