Crime in Chicago
July 2, 2012 8:25 AM   Subscribe

Crime in Chicago
A data visualization that lets you explore crime trends in Chicago's 50 wards. It was built using open data about Chicago crimes released by the Chicago Police Department. We also created make a poster using the same data.

In recent months, Chicago’s rising homicide rate has put crime squarely in the news. But is Chicago really in the middle of a crime wave? How do recent crime trends compare to past years? And in what ward are all the crimes actually taking place?

Crime in Chicago, the latest civic app from Open City, attempts to answer these questions.

The website offers an interactive data visualization of the 4.8 million crimes reported in Chicago over the last decade. It lets citizens see crime trends around them, compare crime levels over the years and across city wards, and explore each ward’s homicides, robberies, assaults and dozens of other crimes.

We also decided to make a printed poster that offers a bird’s-eye-view all reported crime in Chicago in 2011. It is available for purchase on the website and all proceeds go towards hosting costs and updates to the site.

The Chicago Police Department (CPD) has tracked local crime trends for years to guide its policing efforts, but it had never made this information available to the public until recently. The Emanuel administration and the CPD now publish a crime data feed on the City of Chicago’s Data Portal which we use to power this app.

A little bit more about us
Open City is a group of technologists that create civic apps with open data to improve transparency, efficiency, and decision-making for governments and our democracy. I have posted many of our other apps on mefi projects before.

The technology
Listed below are the open source and Google libraries to make this app. The entire codebase for Crime in Chicago is open source and available on Github.
Role: developer
posted by kakarott999 (3 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

I went to look up maps to confirm which ward I'm in and it reminded me how ridiculously gerrymandered the whole thing is.
posted by Evilspork at 9:00 PM on July 3, 2012

I love civic apps and I think this is really cool!
I think it's great that the page with detailed data on a ward also shows you the relevant Alderman, with contact info.
I not from Chicago, and know pretty much nothing about the place but cool on you guys for making this open source! :)
posted by The Biggest Dreamer at 11:59 AM on July 4, 2012

Perhaps it's because I'm on a smartphone (HTC EVO Shift), but when I select a ward, I get a wall of text where the secondary chart is set to appear.

[2011-01-01]: 31 crimes listed[2011-01-02]: 11 crimes listed[2011-01-03]: 17 crimes listed[2011-01-04]: 11 crimes listed[2011-01-05]: 9 crimes listed[2011-01-06]: 21 crimes listed (etc.)

That being said, the graphics that are shown in the explanation of how it works look great. I will definitely be poking around the site when I get to an actual PC.
posted by youngergirl44 at 9:22 PM on July 4, 2012

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