Public Works Expo 2018

MD13 - 3-D Printing: Using Modern Technology for Show and Tell

Aug 27, 2018 2:00pm ‐ Aug 27, 2018 2:50pm


Much of the work that public works departments do is complex and hidden from sight. It is difficult for people to picture how sewers work, what systems exist and why they might fail, or what facilities will look like when completed. In response to flooding events in 2017, the City of Grandview, Missouri, developed 3-D models of flooded areas so engineers, local officials, and residents could get a better, more tactile picture of the local terrain and, thus, a better understanding of the mechanics of the flooding. The models were developed using terrain models and 3-D printers and helped refute false information and sped up the problem-solving process.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this session, you will be better able to: 

  • Identify tools and technologies that can be used to solve common public works problems.
  • Explore how 3-D printing can be used to create models of proposed public work projects.
  • Speed problem-solving by better communicating with the citizens and elected officials.


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