Idaho Power Company implements facility data management system

Fort Collins, Colo., Jan. 17, 2002 — Idaho Power Company, a investor-owned electric utility based in Boise, Idaho, with more than 400,000 residential and business customers, has completed its ArcGIS/ArcFM implementation.

The utility is currently servicing a territory of 22,000 square miles with nearly 5,000 miles of transmission lines and 20,000 miles of distribution lines. Over the past eight months, Idaho Power with the assistance of POWER Engineers, Inc., the utility’s geographic information system (GIS) consultant, has completed the migration of their facility data from ArcInfo 7.2 into ESRI’s new object-oriented ArcGIS platform.

“Idaho Power sought a solution that will allow the access and use of the data in more powerful ways. The solution was clearly identified with the release of ESRI’s new ArcGIS environment with Miner & Miner’s ArcFM 8.1,” said Jan Bryant, Idaho Power’s information technology delivery leader.

Previously, Idaho Power had utilized TELLUS, an ArcGIS-based software, which uses Oracle as its database. Idaho Power’s new open solution includes Oracle and ArcSDE as tools to organize and manage the migrated data set. The utility also wanted to be able to migrate some aspects of the TELLUS model.

Thus, POWER recommended Miner & Miner’s ArcFM 8.1. Currently, approximately 20 Idaho Power employees are using ArcFM, and many others are using the Intranet capabilities of ArcIMS. ArcFM allows the re-creation of the TELLUS model in an open environment that is readily configurable and useable in the new platform.

In addition, ArcFM provides powerful utility-specific tools to support Idaho Power’s facility management and updating process. “Data is much more accessible in ArcFM. Its biggest benefit is that it allows for smoother integration between the different departments,” stated Bryant.

Throughout the implementation, POWER has been providing project management, geodatabase design and creation, data migration, custom interface programming, employee training, and system configuration services. POWER completed the development of the new data model and the migration of the utility’s facility data into ArcFM. Rollout is now underway. Idaho Power’s personnel are now saving time and money while obtaining more powerful and accurate information about their facilities and customers.

Idaho Power implemented a custom ArcIMS Web application, complete with custom data entry pages, to link every customer’s meter number to a transformer in the Oracle geodatabase. This application will be available to all Idaho Power support staff via their Intranet and will track all residential and business customers within Idaho Power’s service territory.

About Miner & Miner
Miner & Miner (M&M) develops and implements GIS software for utilities. M&M products and services assist electric, gas, water, and wastewater utilities in increasing productivity, lowering costs, and improving services by allowing them to effectively manage spatial information. For more information, please visit

About POWER Engineers
POWER Engineers, Inc., is a utility engineering firm specializing in electrical power transmission and distribution. POWER’s array of GIS services include migration to ArcGIS, application development, needs assessments, geodatabase design, cadastral mapping, data conversion, analysis, and training. For more information, please visit

About Idaho Power Company
Idaho Power Company is investor-owned utility providing electric service to nearly 400,000 residential and business customers throughout a 20,000-square-mile service territory in southern Idaho, eastern Oregon, and northern Nevada. The company owns and operates 17 hydroelectric plants on the Snake River and its tributaries and also has interest in three coal-fired generating stations. For more information, please visit

About ESRI
ESRI is a developer of GIS software which also provides consulting, implementation, and technical support services. ESRI can be found on the web at

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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