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Automated Earth Control Measure Submission Evaluator

Challenge Statement

How might we reduce the time spent on the evaluation of Earth Control Measures submission drawings and accurately identify the lapses?

Background & Current Practice

PUB receives more than 1,500 drawing submissions in PDF and CAD formats per year seeking approval for construction works requiring earth control measures (ECM). As part of the evaluation, PUB personnel needs to review the to-scale ECM drawings to ensure that the key design elements and key requirements are included and valid. The process requires a lengthy time for an experienced eye to manually inspect the drawings.

Opportunities Areas & Key Considerations

We are interested in solutions that use machine learning or artificial intelligence to help reduce the time spent evaluating 2D CAD drawings to pinpoint and identify lapses that require correcting. For example, the solution should be able to estimate the size and capacity of sump pits or tanks based on the drawing and determine if they are appropriately sized to the area of the worksite. Other examples include the ability of the solution to identify whether critical requirements for ECM are met based on annotations/texts within the drawing.

Previous attempts to use Building Information Modeling (BIM) methods to review ECM were put on hold as the industry is not ready to transition to BIM, which are much more complex 3D models of civil structures.

Key Challenges
  • The solution must be operable from the stand-alone device or a private cloud, separated from the Internet.
  • The solution must be able to imbibe a range of file types, including PDF documents, scanned image files, 2D CAD drawing files, Microsoft Word Doc files, etc.
  • The solution must be able to decipher the different drawing formats adopted by different contractors.
  • The solution must neither increase the cost to the construction industry nor significantly complicate the process and level of detail required for submissions.
Challenge Owners

Catchment & Waterways Department

Expected Timeline for Deployment

Total project period - less than 12 months
Data analysis and solution development - 4 months
Testing and review of the solution - 6 months

Expected Project Outcomes

A solution that is able to decipher past submissions and identify more than 90% of the commonly spotted issues in submissions.

Challenge Winner

Zuhlke Engineering, Switzerland