NEW ORLEANS – On April 16, the Wall Street Journal cited New Orleans as one of the cities in the nation that uses data to revolutionize the way city governments are run and improve the way residents lives their lives. To read the article, click here.
"This article is a validation of the work we're doing to make our city stronger.” said Mayor Landrieu. “New Orleans is our nation’s most immediate laboratory for innovation and change and this recognition demonstrates that we are a world leader in building a better, stronger community."
“Whether it’s making it easier for residents to find parking places, or guiding health inspectors to high-risk restaurants or giving smoke alarms to the households that are most likely to suffer fatal fires, big-data technologies are beginning to transform the way cities work,” according to the article.
The article says that in the recent years, mayors and cities have used various data “to tackle many of the problems of urban life”, including how to anticipate problems. The Journal featured the New Orleans Fire Department (NOFD)-run program in which the department identifies and distributes smoke detectors to homes that need it most. To decrease the number of fire deaths, the presence of working smoke alarms is critical.
Oliver Wise, director of the City’s Office of Performance and Accountability (OPA), and his team used Census Bureau information to identify city blocks most likely to contain homes without smoke detectors, those at the greatest risk for fire fatalities and neighborhoods with a history of house fires.
Together, this information allowed OPA to produce a map that shows those blocks where fire deaths were most likely to occur and where NOFD could target its smoke-detector distribution.
Since the data program began in early 2015, NOFD has installed about 18,000 smoke detectors. That compares to less than 800 detectors a year previously, says NOFD Superintendent Chief Tim McConnell.
The Journal also cited Boston, Mobile and Louisville for their efforts in data innovation.
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