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Transit Asset Management Forum IMC-2017

Transit Asset Management Forum IMC-2017 by John Murphy

Transit Asset Management Forum IMC-2017

John Murphy

December saw another successful International Maintenance Conference (IMC), with over 1,100 participants from 41 countries. Part of the conference included the Transit Asset Management (TAM) forum, held the first day of the conference. Presented in association with the Rail Reliability and Asset Management Roundtable, the TAM forum was designed as an opportunity for agencies to share simple and practical approaches that they can put to work immediately using asset management (AM) and Industrial Internet of Things solutions (IIoT). The forum was well attended and presenters shared some highly interesting progress stories with attendees.

Overview of Presenters’ Key Shares:

Passenger/commuter agencies are facing many challenges that AM and IIoT solutions can address:

The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates $4.6 trillion to be spent by 2025 in order to bring U.S. infrastructure to an acceptable standard. Less than half that amount has been allocated so far.

Managing the asset obsolescence challenge requires a specific focus by agencies to ensure AM/IIoT designs drive extending existing asset life, as well as improve new asset lifecycle management.

Figure 1 Figure 1: Typical obsolescence risk in the asset lifecycle
(Courtesy: John Gariti, Long Island Railroad and Jesse Rothkopf, Life Cycle Engineering)

A serious issue for transit rail operators is a lack of basic information about their legacy assets, such as their condition, history, criticality, replacement lifecycle and total cost of operations of the asset, in terms that are quantifiable and mutually agreed upon.

Investing in AM/IIoT solutions has seen rapid acceptance by agencies over the last 12 to 18 months, compelled by:

The marriage of digital technologies and infrastructure has given rise to smart infrastructure.
~ Michael Salvato, MTA

Key technologies required for tomorrow’s agency management include:

Figure 2 Figure 2: “The marriage of digital technologies and physical infrastructure has given rise to smart infrastructure.” --- Michael Salvato, Director and Program Executive, Enterprise Information and Asset Management, IMC-2017 presentation

Increased AM/IIOT technology integration has organizational implications:

The agency AM/IIoT journey requires extensive planning, change leadership and program management:

The transit/passenger agency of the future will consist of smart designed stations and platforms, and self-aware and self-managing equipment on connected networks that are all connected into control centers or hubs, thus leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and learning management systems to deliver high levels of customer service at an optimized cost per passenger.

Thanks go out to the presenters at the Transit Asset Management forum for sharing their thoughts, experiences and visions of how agencies and solution providers are working together to address the issues facing America. As Michael Salvato, director and program executive, Enterprise Information and Asset Management, concluded in his presentation: “The challenges facing America require much more than incremental improvements. They require reinventing the infrastructure industry. Rebuilding America’s crumbling infrastructure requires a major paradigm shift.”

The 2018 Transit Asset Management Forum is planned for IMC-2018, the 33rd International Maintenance Conference, December 10-14, 2018. If you are interested in learning more or want to be part of the transit management solution discussions at, contact: