The Code For Cary Brigade Releases The First Regional Instance Of Citygram

Code for Cary and OpenDataSoft

The Code for Cary Brigade has released a new regional instance of Citygram, merging information from three cities — Raleigh, Durham and Cary — to create one unique intersection of data, known as Citygram Triangle.

Code for Cary began using OpenDataSoft’s free brigade open data portal not long after Triangle Open Data Day was held at North Carolina State University on Feb. 21-22.

Citygram is a civic engagement app that takes open data and transforms it into timely, highly localized updates on topics of importance to citizens. It was developed during the 2014 Code for America fellowship program in Charlotte, N.C., and refined through a strong collaboration between the City of Charlotte and the Code for Charlotte brigade. It later won a Code for America Technology Award. And it just so happens to work especially well with OpenDataSoft. As Jim Van Fleet, co-founder and co-captain of the Charlotte Code for America brigade, notes: “With OpenDataSoft’s GeoJSON support and powerful data transformation features, publishing to Citygram is a snap!

Code for Cary launched their Citygram instance with the dataset most requested by citizens — police incident data. However, the town of Cary lacked an open data portal. As a result, Code for Cary Brigade captain Robert Campbell contacted the local police department and signed up for a weekly email distribution list of crime incident data in CSV format. He turned to OpenDataSoft to mold the information into a useable format for Citygram.

Cary Crimes Dashboard

Cary Crimes Dashboard

Robert Campbell tells us about his experience with the OpenDataSoft platform:

“With OpenDataSoft, I am able to upload this CSV data, automatically process it to provide a corrected Lat/Lon location field, and then publish the data for general consumption and analysis.

We are able to pre-process the data to match the input needs of Citygram, and through the API we provide the data to a collection system that aggregates our Cary data with police incident data from the Raleigh and Durham open data portals to feed a Triangle instance on Citygram.

Additionally, we have used our OpenDataSoft portal to map Google Fiber deployment in the Triangle, mirror the entire Wake County parcels (facilitating analysis of data across the county), Cary Trash Day pickup (providing a way to easily determine recycling dates), and Cary Permit information (tracking permits across the town by type and vendor).

OpenDataSoft’s intuitive, easy-to-use portal is my favorite way to gather, manage, analyze, view and share information to the public.

The capability to pull and manage large amounts of data, and then do analysis, has made OpenDataSoft my go-to source for information,” Campbell says. “Additionally, the ability to share this information with the public via an intuitive web-interface has been both well received and useful to the community.”


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