I’m excited to announce that we rolled out a new open data portal for the Philadelphia region today, OpenDataPhilly.org. Open data and government transparency have been increasingly visible concerns over the past few years. The City of Philadelphia was once a leader in this respect. The municipal government made its GIS data available to the public at no charge almost 10 years ago, and, at the time, was one of the first and largest municipalities in the world to do so. In order to do this, City staff worked through a number of challenging issues that included liability, homeland security and development of a common standard and process for vetting and releasing new data sets. That data has been available on PASDA, the state spatial data clearinghouse for Pennsylvania, ever since.
I have been so honored to be a part of this process and hope that this drive of transparency continues with vigor across all sectors of our city and nation.