Are your local councils fixing problems?
Posted by markharrison on December 31, 2007
Earlier today, I noticed an interesting widget on the loudmouthman blog.
It showed “street problems” (things like abandoned vehicles, fly-tipping and so on) near his house, provided by a site called fixmystreet.
I was sufficiently interested in what was going on that I went over to that site, and found that there were two things you could do there:
- Report a problem (and then give updates)
- Get a list of all problems within a certain distance of your house (I picked 5km, a range of options are available.)
As far as I can tell, FixMyStreet doesn’t actually FIX the problems, nor does it manage reporting them. What it DOES do, though, is publish them, so we can see what particular areas are like to live in, and which councils respond quickly to these kinds of things.
As someone who has read “The Tipping Point”, I’m aware of the argument that fixing problems like vandalism and fly-tipping is a good start to reducing crime… I’m not entirely convinced (because I’ve also read “Freakonomics”), but actually, being able to compare areas certainly strikes me as a good thing, and a useful tool if I’m looking at property in an area I don’t know well.
So, an interesting site, and one to keep an eye on, and if you’re reading this blog on my site (as opposed to in a feed reader), then you can see how my own area’s doing 🙂