Converting a Haestad hydraulics model file to a GIS Database

This article uses WaterGEMS as an example, but the same steps could apply to HAMMER and SewerGEMS.

Most workflows that I have encountered involve a user taking GIS information and building a hydraulic model. Some users may want to work from the opposite direction with an already constructed Haestad product hydraulic model and build a GIS database. This is probably not as common a situation, but may happen if a user is more familiar with the hydraulic modeling software than using GIS software and there is currently no GIS information available. There are a few ways to build a geodatabase file from a Haestad product hydraulic model. The first way assumes the user knows a little about ArcMap and how to use it while being familiar with Bentley’s ModelBuilder tool.

The first step is to open WaterGEMS for ArcMap and load the model file. Then open the geotable for all the elements in your model and add all the fields that should be included in the geodatabase being built. Next use the geoprocessing tool called “Feature class to Geodatabase (multiple)”, which is used to construct the geodatabase from all the elements in the hydraulic model.

The next steps must be done in WaterGEMS  for ArcMap because it has the ModelBuilder data source option of a geodatabase file.  Start ModelBuilder and choose the database that was created in the above steps. In step 3 of ModelBuilder, make sure all the boxes are checked. Proceed through step 4 and in step 5, the field mapping step, select the fields that are going to be maintained in sync with the geodatabase for future maintenance of the GIS data. Use the model “Label” field as your 'Key field' for step 5. Make certain that each label is unique.  

After setting up the mappings, syncing the data in and out to the model requires the user to click the “Build Model” or “Sync Out” icons in the ModelBuilder window.


The other way to build a GIS geodatabase is to convert your model elements to shapefiles. This can be  done using WaterGEMS standalone or one of the other platform products and is accomplished by opening each flextable, editing the flextable to include all the columns that are needed in the shapefile (geodatabase), clicking on the icon in the upper left hand corner of the table. This needs to be done for each table in the model that contains elements.  Then rename the columns if necessary and click the “Ok” button. Once the flextables are converted a GIS system can be used to construct a geodatabase from the shapefiles.