Home' Position : Position Oct Nov 2015 Contents • Dog exercise information locator.
• Bush Adventures Winter 2015.
• Bush Adventures Spring Program.
• Hobart Interim Planning Scheme 2015.
• Public toilets.
• Urban art.
• Storm surge map.
• Mobile food vendor trial zones.
• Works program.
The list does not end here, and will
continue to grow, with the next project
on the horizon the conversion of eighty
pages of heritage listings into a mobile
app. Having information presented as
maps rather than text, the council has
effectively turned data into information,
opened up community conversation,
and provided easier ways for people to
visualise and discuss what is happening
in their community.
In most cases, setting up the online
maps was a simple matter of reformatting
conventional data into an interactive,
online and mobile format that community
members would enjoy using again
and again. ArcGIS Online allowed the
streamlined publication of these maps on
standard templates enabling access across
desktop and mobile devices.
community to spatial
Earlier this year, Alderman Suzy Cooper,
one of 12 Aldermen who represent the
businesses and residents of the City
of Hobart, received a wave of positive
feedback when she shared ten of the
new web maps across her popular
Ms Cooper received multiple direct
messages and emails from people
interested in the possibilities of using
Hobart City Council's data, and requesting
"I've had a lot of interest from people
I know who work in web development
and graphic design," she said. "They can
see all kinds of possibilities for projects.
These are people aged 20--45, who might
previously have had very little interest in,
or contact with, local government.
"I've also had direct approaches from
people wanting to know what our council
does with some of the data we collect, so
people are definitely thinking about not
only privacy and security, but also about
what's possible. They're seeing themselves
as part of the conversation, not just
passive recipients of information."
Of the initial set of maps the City
of Hobart released, the dog exercise
areas particularly captured residents'
imagination, as the comments under one
of Alderman Cooper's Facebook posts show.
Tickets and taggers
While the public maps are much more
visible to the wider community, the
council has also been working behind the
scenes to spatially empower its internal
processes, gaining efficiencies and
stumbling upon some unforseen benefits.
Contrary to popular belief, parking
officers do have many tasks in addition
to issuing fines to those who have been
found in breach of parking regulations.
Hobart City Council's parking operations
is also responsible for performing vacant
spaces surveys, a task carried out several
times throughout a year to monitor the
usage of parking facilities. Traditionally,
a vacant spaces survey involves a
clipboard, paper, pen and manual entry
into a spreadsheet back in the office.
The parking operations staff themselves
made the push to move into a digital
framework. The council decided to adopt
Collector for ArcGIS to support real-time
surveys and visualise their information
in new ways without the need to step out
of the vehicle. However, as was noted by
Mark Wise: "We came across an unforseen
problem: car sickness! But with Collector,
the pedestrian approach is still four to five
In other areas of operation, unexpected
gains for both council staff and the wider
community were achieved.
The city cleansing team is responsible
mainly for cleaning up graffiti across
the city. When the decision was made
to use Collector, it was initially just to
keep records of where work was being
completed. However, after the field crews
drove changes to the app capturing time,
methods of cleansing, photographic
evidence and naming tags, wider
community benefits arose.
Working closely with Tasmania Police,
the new approach enables Council to link
offenders to their signature tags providing
supporting evidence. In one instance, the
council has been able to link an offender
to 34 tags and support the police in
charging them accordingly.
Ms Wise attributes the council's ability
to swiftly produce so many spatially
empowered services to the ability to
Comments on Alderman Suzy Cooper's Facebook page praising the council for its Dog Exercise
The city cleansing team at Hobart
City Council is now able to assist
Police in charging offenders.
40 position October/November 2015
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