Transportation is a great unifier in our city. Everyone needs it. Everyone uses it. (In one way or another.) And everyone has considered a way it could improve in Philadelphia.
This weekend, you can take an active role in improving transportation in our city at the Apps for Philly Transportation Hackathon. As part of the National Day of Civic Hacking, Code for Philly is hosting a weekend-long event for Philadelphians to brainstorm on solutions and build transportation or civic-engagement-related apps.
Five transportation-related agencies have released a total of 17 data sets in conjunction with the event. The data includes:
- Airport Parking Availability (Philadelphia Parking Authority)
- Valet Parking Permit Locations (Philadelphia Parking Authority)
- Residential Parking Permit Blocks (Philadelphia Parking Authority)
- Active Residential Parking Permits by District (Philadelphia Parking Authority)
- Parking Violations (Bureau of Administrative Adjudication)
- Parking Locations (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Amenities (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Vendors (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Art Exhibits (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Airside Pavement (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Public Parking Locations (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Rental Car Lots (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Roadway Zones (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Runways (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Buildings (Philadelphia International Airport)
- Paving Plan for 2015 (Streets Department)
- Crash Data (Mayor’s Office of Transportation)
The weekend will kick off with a brainstorming session at Amtrak on Friday night from 6:00-9:00. Called a “Community Needs Assessment” the event will provide all attendees with the opportunity to discuss how technology can be used to improve transportation and generate project ideas for the weekend. The event will also include quick pitches from organizations and citizens about available data sets and known problems. Attendees will be able to vote on ideas and also team-up with each other for the following day’s hackathon.
The Hackathon will begin on Saturday morning in the Mezzanine of the SEPTA building and continue on Sunday. Teams will present their projects for feedback to a panel of experts and co-hackers on Sunday afternoon. Experts for the event include:
- Thomas J. Nestel III — Chief of SEPTA Transit Police, SEPTA
- Jerry Connors — Director, Bureau of Administrative Adjudication (BAA)
- Bill Zebrowski — Senior Director, IT/CIO, SEPTA
- Patty Elkis — Director of Planning, Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC)
- Pam Selle — Software Developer, Comcast/Instructor, Girl Develop It (GDI)
Don’t think you have the technical chops to participate in the hackathon? Think again. See this message from Code for Philly:
“This event is not just for coders! Successful projects also need designers, marketers, organizers, spreadsheet wizards, internet researchers, subject matter experts, citizens with experience in an area, and a healthy amount of elbow grease.”
If you’ve ever used transportation in Philadelphia, you are qualified to participate. For more information about the event, check out the Apps for Philly Transportation event page. We hope to see you there!