By Data-Smart City Solutions • February 19, 2021

BLOOMBERG CITY LAB: POST-COVID TRANSIT NEEDS A NEW METRIC FOR SUCCESS 

The typical transit authority sees ridership as the gold standard of transportation data. So what does it mean that the usual metric of success has been knocked sideways by the COVID-19 pandemic? Since funding is often tied to the number of transit riders, cities must find new metrics and more holistic data to measure how useful — and therefore successful — public transit really is. An alternative metric (like access, communities served, or equity) could provide a more realistic and important picture of transit’s value.  

STATE SCOOP: WHAT ROLE DOES A NATIONAL AGENDA PLAY IN DEVELOPING SMART CITIES? 

While cities, especially major metropolises, enjoy a relative degree of autonomy and are often pushing the smart city conversation forward on their own, the federal government does have an important role in the support and adoption of smart city projects. By encouraging collaboration, funding research, supporting infrastructure investments, assisting with data privacy policy, and more, the federal government can actively assist with smart city development and elevate the work on a national level. 

 

GOVLAUNCH: 7 WAYS CITIES ARE ACTIVELY IMPROVING CITIZENS' MENTAL HEALTH 

The past 12 months have been incredibly challenging for everyone’s mental health, something local governments are actively trying to address. While this is a new area for most officials, taking a more holistic approach to city services and health care has increasingly become a priority. Learn how cities are driving innovative mental health services, utilizing technology and apps, and safely encouraging community-based events to help support residents. 

THE WASHINGTON POST: LACK OF HEALTH SERVICES AND TRANSPORTATION IMPEDE ACCESS TO VACCINE IN COMMUNITIES OF COLOR 

The novel coronavirus has disproportionately affected non-white communities in the United States, and now the same groups do not appear to be receiving equal access to the COVID-19 vaccine. Although the initial data doesn’t always include race and ethnicity information, there seem to be a few key reasons for this disparity. One is the gaps in infrastructure, and historic lending practices and redlining, which have left many communities of color without reliable access to pharmacies or healthcare. 

CITIES TODAY: NEW YORK MTA NAMES FIRST CHIEF ACCESSIBILITY OFFICER 

For many years, disability organizations and advocates have pushed New York City to improve poor subway accessibility. According to the data, NYC has fewer than 29 percent fully-accessible stations. The new Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Chief Accessibility Officer, himself a wheelchair user, will explore technological solutions to fix the city’s historic inaccessibility.