CityVoice: A call-in system for gathering, sharing, and understanding place-based community feedback
CityVoice makes giving community feedback quick, easy and accessible, and turns that feedback into actionable information. It's a phone-based system that enables community members to leave both structured feedback (survey responses or votes) and unstructured feedback (voice messages) about specific locations. Community members don't need a computer, a smartphone, or even a cell phone to participate—they can listen to and leave feedback through any telephone, including a landline. The feedback is stored in a database and is distilled and directed to appropriate decision makers.
In South Bend, it was used to collect feedback on vacant and abandoned properties from neighbors and residents. The quantitative and qualitative information collected through the app is being used to inform the City’s decision-making process on pursuing demolition or finding avenues to repair a given property, such as giving properties as side lots to neighboring property owners. Outside of City government, it has helped catalyze conversations between neighbors themselves on this issue of abandoned properties. In addition, the City can now quickly identify concerned neighbors and follow up to ensure that their concerns are addressed.