E-cology: Binnies’ digital innovations propel HS2

In May 2021, Asset magazine, a quarterly publication for members of the Institute of Asset Management (IAM), published an article by Paul Hart, Binnies Information Management and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) specialist. The article outlines Paul’s work facilitating a digital ecology strategy for HS2’s ecology survey programme, which earned him IAM’s Information Management Award at the IAM Global Awards 2020.

According to High Speed Two (HS2) Ltd CEO Mark Thurston, HS2 is “the biggest environment project in Britain” and the transition to “digital ecology”, an innovative, data-centric approach to the project’s extensive ecological survey programme, is one area helping to keep the project on programme.

During 2019, it was decided that, in addition to the thousands of surveys already undertaken, even more ecological surveys were needed to maintain the schedule and strengthen the quality regime. To meet this challenge, Paul and his team developed an overarching digital ecology strategy supported by a common data environment platform OnSite, which introduced a data-centric approach to the process for completing ecology surveys. As a direct result of this innovative approach, the number of surveys completed has increased eightfold. In 2020, Binnies carried out more than 6000 surveys compared with fewer than 1,000 surveys in 2019, despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The new system can receive, process and assure 200–300 surveys in a week. Previously, this process took more than a month.

This project demonstrates the value of a data-centric, digitised approach to surveying spatially diffused entities. Binnies OnSite platform offers integrated mobile and office data capture: an assurance and verification platform enabling efficient site work.

Following the award by the IAM, Paul commented, “The opportunity to share our achievements with HS2 and then to receive this accolade highlights the value offered by the transition to digital ecology. A project of HS2’s scale cannot succeed without innovation.”

Binnies has years of experience in delivering bespoke services to clients using its digital products along with best-in-class third-party tools, applications and methodologies. We work with our clients’ existing technology stack to deliver solutions that meet their needs and exceed their expectations. IAM members can read the article in full on the Assets magazine website.

To find out more about our digital ecology solution or any other of our digital products and services, please contact Paul Hart.