For the second year in a row, the City of Syracuse partnered with Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies and AT&T to run a civic hackathon. More than 30 teams and 90 people signed up to participate, and ultimately 16 teams submitted projects. The winners had creative solutions that were well-conceived and built out enough that we could get an idea of how to implement in the future.
Last week, we hosted to Snow Safety Summit to get public feedback and ideas about these issues, with our biggest focus on clearing sidewalks. We structured this event differently than past meetings. It was “open house” style and consisted of several different stations where people could weigh in on different winter related topics. Approximately 150 people attended the Summit, and we were able to collect valuable feedback that we have already sorted through. You can review the ideas, suggestions, and comments that we received on our open data portal, DataCuse.
Here are the biggest takeaways from the Summit...
Infrastructure Week - a national week of attention dedicated to elevating infrastructure as a critical issue impacting everyone - is this week.
In Syracuse, improving infrastructure is one of Mayor Miner’s top priorities, and if you have followed this blog, you will know that the innovation team has focused its efforts on infrastructure for more than a year. Our infrastructure report, detailing the work done so far, is available here.
Flint's infrastructure crisis has been well documented, and many of you are probably already familiar with their challenges. In April 2014, the City of Flint changed its water source from Lake Huron to the Flint River. The new water source proved to be corrosive and, without proper treatment, caused lead from water service lines (the pipes that bring water from the larger water mains into homes) to leach into and contaminate the water.
This past summer, we partnered with the Water Department and the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Data Science for Social Good Fellowship to work on developing a model that predicts how at risk water mains are of breaking. In the months following the partnership, we've seen that the model they built is giving us intelligence about the water system that supplements the knowledge of the crews that attend to it every day. Using data to predict how risky water mains are helps us plan for their maintenance and replacement, and allows us to better coordinate construction work across the different infrastructure systems. The project also showed us what it takes to have a positive partnership on a data project like this.
To date, we have launched thirteen initiatives and programs. We would like to share a report which details our work and discusses each initiative in detail. The link to our infrastructure report is below. Please check it out, and let us know your comments, questions, or suggestions in the comments below!