Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced today that the Department of City Planning's PGHSNAP initiative was given an Honor Award by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). The Department of City Planning is one of 49 award winners from 618 entries worldwide.
The 2010 ASLA Professional Awards jury had high compliments for PGHSNAP, saying "It is an impressive undertaking to make this type of geographic and mapping data available in a format that is user-defined yet doesn't require GIS equipment and capabilities. The interface is exceptionally clear and even inviting and fun to navigate. The commitment to maintain this resource as an annually updated database is yet more impressive. This is an important precedent that shows us how public agencies can catalyze advances in the work of the firms that work for them. Communication will be easier between landscape architects and client communities in Pittsburgh, because they can now share access to more of the information that guides planning and design decisions."
"It's amazing that Pittsburgh was competing with urban areas across the globe, and we again came out on top," Ravenstahl said. "My goal is to streamline government and make operations more efficient, and PGHSNAP is a great example of a city department that is utilizing technology to serve the public by providing data in user-friendly and cost-effective way."
To view all the award winners, visit www.asla.org/2010awards.
PGHSNAP is an online, interactive neighborhood data and map resource that significantly improves access to statistics and maps on Pittsburgh's neighborhoods. PGHSNAP informs planning strategies/initiatives and is a dynamic planning tool that assists community stakeholders in investment decision making. The information contained within PGHSNAP is accessible, efficient, and updated yearly. Noor Ismail, Director of City Planning, states that "PGHSNAP was built around the concept that data should be easily accessible by the general public and easily updated by planning staff. Since data must be fresh in order to be effectively used, PGHSNAP is available online--going paperless with PGHSNAP allows us to update the data efficiently, and is in line with the City's sustainability goals." PGHSNAP was produced in-house by Department of City Planning staff with assistance from the Pennsylvania Department of Economic and Community Development (DCED) in the form of a $100,000 grant for data collection.
Founded in 1899, ASLA is the national professional association for landscape architects, representing 17,000 members in 48 professional chapters and 68 student chapters. The Society's mission is to lead, to educate, and to participate in the careful stewardship, wise planning, and artful design of our cultural and natural environments. Members of the Society use the "ASLA" suffix after their names to denote membership and their commitment to the highest ethical standards of the profession.
Monday, May 3, 2010
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Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
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