Louisville Metro residents can now access neighborhood crime data quickly through the city’s website.
The police department recently launched its Crime Map application, which allows users to view the most recent crime information for any address in county.
Michael Schnuerle is the independent programmer contracted to design the new application. His relationship with the city began during a storm last June after he sent Mayor Greg Fischer a tweet saying residents could benefit from an online map that provided certain data, he said.
“And he immediately, or whoever was running his Twitter account, tweeted back and said that sounds like a great idea, do you have a plan for this? And I wrote back, yes I do. I have this website GovMapper. And he said, let me put you in touch with technology services,” said Schnuerle.
GovMapper helps businesses or governments startup data-driven web applications. For Louisville Metro, this spawned into the city’s Crime Map application, which allows users to pinpoint crime data in the city to a specific address.
Users can now bypass a phone call to the city for crime information. This saves the city time and money spent fulfilling public requests., said Schnuerle.
“Other cities have done similar things like this but they’re usually big cities. So it’s usually New York, Chicago, D.C., San Francisco, Portland…are kind of the big ones that have started to do this to open data and to visualize it on their sites. So to have Louisville join their ranks is kind of a big deal to me.”
Louisville has taken other steps recently to make data available to the public using technology. Last year the city partnered the Transit Authority of River City and Google Maps.