Category Archives: City

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CitySync is a New Civic Portal for City of Portland, Oregon

I came across a new platform for engagement, community, and participation from the City of Portland. CitySync gives residents and business owners a personalized way to access local news, information, and events in and around the city of Portland.

CitySync aims to provide residents with a number of customizable features, from location-based news feed, transportation and transit alerts and community forums.  Here are three areas the new hyperlocal portal will deliver content for Portland, Oregon residents:

  • PDX Democracy – Stay on top of upcoming City Council agenda topics, browse past Council session agendas and video, and share your ideas of how to make Portland an even greater city.
  • Shop Local – Discover new businesses in your neighborhood, browse deals from local shops, and learn more about the stories behind the businesses you love.
  • Portland Schools – Easily browse local school achievement data, including Adequate Yearly Progress reports, SAT score averages, and more.

CitySync wants to engage local citizens allowing them to submit and vote on new ideas and is engaging civic-minded developers, by holding a CitySync Ideas and Apps Challenge, hosted by CivicApps.

Portland has always been a model for open data and civic minded application development. The new CitySync portal looks like a model that other cities can look to for developing their own hyperlocal community web and mobile applications.

City of Austin, Texas Has An Open Data Portal

City open data sites are popping up all over the place. This year Austin, TX launched a new open data portal for the city alongside a website refresh for the city, using a Drupal-based website.

As part of a resolution affirming the City council’s commitment to open government, the city worked with open data platform Socrata to build and deploy the portal. The portal provides data downloads and APIs serving up local city data-sets such as water quality sampling data, animal intake reports, lobbying data and affordable housing inventory maps.

The Austin, Texas open data portal one more city to get on the open data bandwagon, following the recent launch of San Francisco, and adding to NYCChicagoBaltimoreSeattleSan Francisco, and New Orleans..

I’m spending time going through all the Socrata powered portals and finding some of the best data-sets CityGrid developers can use to enrich their local web and mobile applications. I am also spending time working with our data ingestion team to make them aware of the most valuable city datasets, as well as reaching out to each of the city data evangelists to make sure we work together around data, hackathons and future city initiatives.