Local authorities and residents where informed and involved in discussions aimed at agreeing on the solutions and remedial actions needed. The experience in the San Bartolomeo neighborhood in Anagni stands out as an example of best practice that should be applied in integrated water service management across the territory to ensure the best solutions to any issues that may arise.
From good ideas to good work the step was short: in these days San Bartolomeo is undergoing a major upgrade to the entire water distribution network that serves the densely populated area. The project involves installing approximately 700 meters of ductile iron pipes (DN80) on public ground, as well as work to adapt and normalize private connections and install new prefabricated structures to house new meters.
As will be recalled, until 2019 in the San Bartolomeo neighborhood there were approximately 400 non-registered water supplies, served by a network in extremely bad conditions, with significant contract irregularities and losses worth around €2.2 million impacting on tariffs across the ATO5 area. A situation that was resolved thanks to the collaboration and dialog between Acea Ato 5, the Municipality of Anagni, the Consumer Protection Body (Otuc), local institutions, and local residents who were able to regularize their position thanks to fast and effective procedures.
Additionally, normalizing the service allowed to start work on the new wastewater treatment plant that serves the neighborhood, with great advantage for local residents and the environment.
Following an initial and essential administrative stage to regularize water supply contracts, Acea Ato 5 is now working on new private water supply connections and, were technically possible, replacing condominium supplies by installing a new distribution line with the use of more performing and long-lasting materials. The installation of an individual meter for each water supply in condominiums allows users to control better their consumption and avoid meter reading anomalies and hidden leaks, and also provides easy access to the water bonus where applicable.
Finally, taking shared actions to regularize supplies guarantees equal treatment for all users and balances the cost of the service proportionately among all users who access it correctly.
The neighborhood of San Bartolomeo is an excellent example of the good results that can be achieved, to everyone’s advantage, when local issues are shared and faced through dialog among all those involved.
The approach taken in the case of San Bartolomeo was successful and discouraged any unproductive objections, misinformed and ideological disputes, and inaccurate claims. All sides chose to collaborate adopting an approach based on listening to local needs, respecting roles, willingness to collaborate and correct information and communication.