Cambridge wins AMO’s Peter J. Marshall Award for Municipal Innovation

Posted on Wednesday August 16, 2017

The City of Cambridge was recognized yesterday by the Association of Municipalities in Ontario (AMO) with the Peter J. Marshall Award for Municipal Innovation for the use of “ice pigging” in sewer maintenance.

The award honours municipal governments who demonstrate excellence through the use of innovative approaches to improve efficiency and effectiveness through alternative service delivery initiatives and partnerships.

The innovative ice pigging technique was first used in 2016 when the City explored the use of a new technology to keep sanitary siphons clear of debris. Up until this point, these siphons had been difficult to clean and had become more blocked over time. In order to address this challenge, City staff decided to try a new approach called “ice pigging.”

This cleaning process uses ice to form an “ice pig” that is pushed through the pipe – cleaning debris blocking the flow.  It is a much safer process than traditional cleaning techniques as there is no equipment that can get stuck or break the pipe – a costly and potentially environmentally dangerous problem.  Cambridge was the first city to use this process in Canada and gained a lot of interest from municipalities with similar challenges.

The success of this project has opened up the options for cleaning other city assets such as water mains and other sanitary force mains. Keeping critical infrastructure in good condition is a key part of the City’s overall asset management program.