How Newark is making its open data easy to use - Technical.ly Delaware

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Sep. 14, 2016 10:09 am

How Newark is making its open data easy to use

The city offers GIS mapping applications that display everything from trash pickup to voting districts.

An easy way to interact with Newark's open data.

(Screenshot)

We recently met with the Newark Police Department about its open data efforts, and the City of Newark has similar goals. According to communications manager Kelly Bachman, the city has been using ArcGIS for the past three years to power its CivicConnect portal.

“The Newark Police Department was the first department to look into crowdsourcing data, we’ll see if other departments can also benefit from that as well,” said Bachman.

The city has full GIS application gallery to encourage public engagement — providing public information on everything from snow plow routes to area parks.

The goal for this series of maps was to raise awareness of the services the city had to offer, Bachman said, but also to create a convenient place where this information can be accessed. The IT department even put together a tutorial to encourage use:

“It allows us to operate more efficiently and it allows us to respond to incidents more efficiently as well,” said former GIS Coordinator Roberto Dedeus. (It was one of the last projects he worked on before leaving to join the newest cohort at Zip Code Wilmington.)

Right now the city is only providing its residents with information, but there are plans to enable two-way data sharing.

Wouldn’t it be great if all cities adopted technology like this?

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Rana Fayez

Rana Fayez was Technical.ly Delaware's lead reporter. She was previously business reporter and digital editor for the Delaware Business Times. In 2015, she won two awards from the Delaware Press Association for her coverage on consumer retail trends and technology news. When not storytelling, she's volunteering or making music.

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