Washington's snow response GIS mapping system gets a workout

City's Snow Response Reporting System enables residents to see which streets have been plowed, salted

A mapping tool that shows which streets in Washington have been plowed, salted or both is being heavily used today, according to several blogs, Twitter posts and Facebook updates.

The Snow Response Reporting System lets users type in an address and see which surrounding streets have been plowed or salted within a specified date range. The information is presented via a Google Maps interface.

For example, so far today at Columbia Road and 18th Street in Northwest Washington have been plowed and salted, while side streets such as Kalorama Road have not been touched, according to the map.

Federal Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra pushed for the development of geographic information systems such as the snow response system when he was the city’s chief technology officer, he told Federal Computer Week in past interviews.

In 2008, while he was still Washington's CTO, the snow response system was one of 10 GIS projects Kundra identified for enhancements, according his testimony at a public oversight hearing about the city’s capital improvements budget.

The city uses GIS maps and databases to support several functions including emergency management and response, economic development and planning, crime analysis and law enforcement, transportation and public works management and disaster recovery according to the city’s Web site.

The Snow Response Reporting System won a significant achievement award from the Public Technology Institute for its 2007-2008 Technology Solutions Awards, according to the institute’s Web site.

 

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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