Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego Credits Open Data Portal for Inspiring Community Solutions to Urban Challenges

May 9, 2023 0 Comment

According to Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, when a city provides access to valuable data through an open data portal, it can inspire innovative solutions from the community. During a recent webinar hosted by What Works Cities, an initiative of Bloomberg Philanthropies, Gallego stated that an open data portal not only promotes transparency but also encourages residents and researchers to utilize the data to come up with innovative solutions to enhance city operations.

Gallego highlighted that by giving the community more data, they could provide more solutions, resulting in less complaining and more problem-solving. For example, residents interested in parking solutions requested transportation data, while the community concerned about rising temperatures used the open data portal to identify Phoenix’s hotspots and redesign bus stops to increase shade coverage. Moreover, city staff leveraged data to address pay gaps among men, women, and communities of color.

The city’s open data portal aggregates data from various city agencies such as the Office of Homeless Solutions, the Neighborhood Services Department, the Parks and Recreation Department, and the police and fire departments. Additionally, demographic, housing, economic, and employment data from federal sources like the Census Bureau, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics are also included.

Gallego emphasized that the open data portal aims to connect the original data source to automatically populate the data whenever there are any changes. However, some data sources still use older programming languages, which slows down the city’s open data efforts, making them dependent on the progress of agency database modernization.


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