By Jan Worth-Nelson
An interactive, open-access mapping project that offers data about the city on everything from educational attainment to median household income to locations of schools, medical services and locations for meal services is now online at mapflint.org/maps.html.
The project is a collaboration of two University of Michigan – Flint units, University Outreach and the Geographic Information Center of the Department of Geography, Planning and the Environment.
Sara McDonnell, project coordinator for University Outreach at UM – Flint, introduced the website last week to the FACT Community Partners meeting under the dome at City Hall.
Funding for the site came from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and the UM – Flint Provost’s Office, McDonnell said. The Mott grant provided $100,000 for the first year, $65,000 for the second, and $30,000 for the third.
The mapping system features a broad variety of data from public sources, and offers users opportunities to view, customize and print maps from their own computers.
The data sets available in the interactive maps fall into four categories: economic development, education, demographics, and health resources.
In health resources, for example, a map viewer can search for dental clinics, vision, food assistance, medical offices, or behavioral health clinics.
In the education section, site explorers can search for a school, see how many students attend, see what literacy services are available, see the educational attainment for an area, the population under five and the population under 17.
McDonnell said the project’s advisory committee includes representatives from 10 organizations. The project is staffed by four employees of University Outreach and three from the Geography Planning and Environment Department’s GIS Center.
McDonnell said at the onset of the project in 2015 the MapFlint team interviewed 20 organizations as they were collating data and gave demonstrations of the website to more than 100 people.
EVM Editor Jan Worth-Nelson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.