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Six pilot projects picked for Hack the Parks civic apps contest

The city's first civic hacking initiative has awarded seed funding to six different projects focused on improving city parks.

The Pagoda at Patterson Park near Butcher's Hill.

Six projects were announced as winners of seed funding yesterday in the first city-sponsored civic apps contest.
Hack the Parks, in partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Information Technology (MOIT), the city’s Department of Recreation and Parks and, called on activists and civic hackers to present projects, technology-based or not, that would improve city parks. It’s the first challenge in a broader civic initiative called Hack Baltimore, as Technically Baltimore reported in March.
MOIT had set aside $10,000 to provide small grants to each Hack the Parks project picked. The following six projects will be piloted in city parks over the remaining summer months.

  1. Mycosolve “will enhance park soil by seeding native mushroom species in areas that are compromised through soil erosion control and myco-remediation which will prevent pollution from runoff.”
  2. Mobile Maintenance Request System “will reduce the time and increase the accuracy of maintenance requests submitted by park goers to park maintenance.”
  3. Leakin Park Invasive Vine Control “will recruit and organize volunteers, break the problem into manageable tasks,” and, using a mobile app, track the progress of the work done to remove invasive vines from trees inside Leakin Park.
  4. Hack the Trash, spearheaded by the Fells Prospect Community Association and the Patterson Park Neighborhood Association, “will partner with Banner Neighborhoods to have local students and artists decorate 30 trash cans, and have them placed around Patterson Park as a public art installation.”
  5. Baltimore Tree Map “seeks to build a web-based map database of trees in Baltimore parks and eventually in the greater Baltimore region.”
  6. Parks Virtual Tour Guide “is a mobile web application that will provide interactive, entertaining, and informative information from the park’s ‘virtual tour guide’. Park visitors will be able to pull up information at ‘stops’ tagged with QR codes and placed at locations throughout the park.”

Find more information in the press release here.

Companies: / Mayor’s Office of Information Technology / City of Baltimore

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