The Knight Foundation awarded more than $3.2 million to eight winners in its Knight News Challenge: Open Government, including $620,000 to Plans in a Box, a city planning engagement tool from New York City-based civic app shop OpenPlans.
Though OpenPlans is based in New York, two out of the five team members working on Plans in a Box are Philly-based: former Code for America Philly fellows Mjumbe Poe and Aaron Ogle.
Plans in a Box will be an open-source tool that lets city employees create websites that keep citizens up-to-date on city planning projects. It’ll integrate with social media and allow for user feedback on the projects.
The project is reminiscent of 2012 Code for America Philly fellows Michelle Lee and Alex Yule‘s Textizen tool, also a Knight News Challenge winner, which allows cities to collect citizen feedback on planning projects via text. Textizen won $350,000 from the Knight News Challenge: Mobile in January .