[CASE STUDY] Implementing Generative AI on the UK’s Biggest Infrastructure Project – a ChatGPT and Azure OpenAI Story

The HS2 railway construction project stands as a cornerstone of the United Kingdom’s infrastructure evolution, showcasing an ambitious leap in engineering and construction innovation. The scale of HS2 introduces a unique data challenge. Every mile of construction feeds into a massive repository of information, encompassing everything from ground surveys and compaction reports to intricate local authority covenants and extensive service contracts. But with more than 20 disparate platforms in use, ranging from in-house catabases, SaaS applications, and custom apps developed by suppliers, piecing together data related to aspects of the construction was becoming more challenging.

With the explosion of generative AI, the question came from programme leadership – “Can’t we just ask something like ChatGPT the questions, and it find the answers from across our systems?” This is a case study of a unique project, where generative AI is streamlining critical processes like incident management in a hugely complex environment. The combination of innovative technology (Azure OpenAI, Azure AI Search, Semantic Kernel and more), talented developers and engineers, and a visionary construction organisation provides a shining example of how gen AI and Large Language Models are making a real difference to the world.

This session aims to convey both the business challenge and the technical solutions, and it’s a story with a few twists and turns along the way. Not unlike the railway line!


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