Conway Corp has unveiled details of its citywide advanced meter upgrade project. In addition to the installation of advanced meter infrastructure for electric and water meters, the company will be installing advanced technology street light controls.
Conway Corp has been an innovative leader in launching new technologies for more than 20 years. In 1995, the company rebuilt its hybrid-fiber-coax plant, a project that cost about $5.6 million. Upon completion in 1997, Conway became the third company in the country and fifth in North America to offer high-speed, broadband cable Internet service. This past December, the company launched a 1 Gigabit internet service offering for residential customers citywide.
With the advanced metering technology, streetlight controls and the company’s hybrid-fiber-coax network, the advanced metering project has moved Conway to be pegged as the “smartest city in the world.”
The technology solution will include a two-way mesh radio network, enhanced electric meters, water meter communication modules and streetlight controller and a meter data management system.
“This project provides a continued vision to enhance operational excellence and customer service through an advanced metering solution,” CEO Richard Arnold said “Once fully deployed and in addition to the obvious immediate benefits, Conway Corp will use the platform to optimize its infrastructure and resource planning and provide future enhanced services to our customers.”
Conway Corp partnered with a strategic consulting company, MW Consulting, to assist with the planning and implementation of the project.
“Their experience and expertise have been invaluable through this project,” Arnold said. “We chose to rely on MW Consulting because of their record of success with these sorts of projects and their willingness to partner with us in the truest sense including mentoring our team with knowledge they will be able to use in future unrelated projects.”
“With our new system’s multi-technology flexibility and an open IPv6 capable and standards compliant network, Conway will be able to integrate with third-party technologies to expand the benefits over time as needed,” Arnold added.
“Conway already has a 1 Gbps hybrid fiber-coax cable system used to provide a voice, video and data services in the city of Conway. We will soon be positioned to look into the project’s next phase where we want to explore the ability to leverage this infrastructure in the delivery of electricity, water and streetlighting services to our customers,” said Arnold.
“With the deployment of our new wireless communication network and its integration into our fibrous system, we believe we have a strong argument as the smartest city in the United States with an operational capability and not just the pilot.”
“MW Consulting's selection through a competitive RFP process is a testament to the power and value of our Utility Partnering Model,” Michael Wiebe, president of MW Consulting said. “It was an exciting opportunity to partner with Conway Corporation and its team. We believe it’s a fabulous model for other cities in the US and around the world regardless of their size. In fact, we are working with two others right now,” Wiebe added.
“Our utility partners gain a tremendous advantage from our experiences supporting projects in 15 countries ranging from 10,000 meter’s to over 30 million meters. Our Model involves a proven family of modular and scalable project templates. Our benchmark benefit data allows our utility partners to quickly and effectively understand their projects potential value proposition and compare it with over 40 other projects totaling over 100 million electricity, water and gas meters as well as streetlights.”
About Conway Corporation
Conway Corp operates the city-owned utility system in Conway, AR. The company provides electric, water, wastewater, cable, internet, telephone and security services within the Conway city limits. Conway Corp was created in 1929 when the Conway City Council organized the corporation to operate the city's electric light plant to raise revenue to help keep Hendrix College and Central Baptist College in Conway. The company’s mission is to exceed customers’ expectations and to produce and deliver safe, affordable, reliable, innovative and environmentally-sound utility and telecommunication services while enhancing the quality of life in the community.
About MW Consulting
Since 1996 MW Consulting has created value for electric, water, streetlight and gas utilities by helping them excel in enhancing operational, financial, environmental, and customer programs. We help them plan, buy, implement and operate solutions including AMI, DA, DR, DG, EE and more. To date we’ve helped utilities in 15 countries ranging in size from 11,000 meters and other devices up to 30 million endpoints. We’re guiding efforts to identify and address emerging IoT threats and opportunities enabled by new IT analytics, communications and device technologies.