Beyond Flint, Michigan: A Nationwide Crisis of Childhood Lead Poisoning

Beyond Flint, Michigan: A Nationwide Crisis of Childhood Lead Poisoning

What happened in Flint was a tragedy — but what many people don’t realize is that most lead exposure occurs not from contaminated water, but from peeling lead paint in older homes. Before his death, Freddie Gray was found to have 35 micrograms of lead in his blood, which is seven times the amount that can impair brain development. Children who are poisoned by lead — often in older homes with peeling lead paint, as in Freddie Gray’s case — are six times more likely to end up in the juvenile justice system or display criminal behavior, and seven times more likely to drop out of school. 

How to Prepare for the Next Demographic Shift: Aging Baby Boomers

How to Prepare for the Next Demographic Shift: Aging Baby Boomers

When considering the demographic shifts that may shape your city in the coming years, there’s one important trend to plan for: cities around the world are getting older. According to a World Health Organization (WHO) report on aging cities, the world population of people 60 and older is expected to double by 2050. How will your city react? Read more to get some pointers. 

mySidewalk Introduces Drawing Tools

mySidewalk Introduces Drawing Tools

Visualize a custom boundary that isn’t reported in the Census. Draw a radius around an economic district or traffic analysis zone. Create a buffer around a project site.


Starting today, you can create a custom boundary directly in mySidewalk using our Drawing Tool feature.

Why Building Permit Data Matters to Cities

Why Building Permit Data Matters to Cities

Building permit data can reveal a lot about a city or community. Places with fast-growing economies tend to have a higher demand for construction. Overall, building permits—particularly those that are residential—are extremely useful in estimating (and even projecting) city growth and change, including student growth rates, job counts, population growth, and overall economic well being. For these reasons, mySidewalk recently added building permit data to the tool. Now you can gather this data for your own city—and use it to find places of high growth as well as places that could use an economic boost. 

Using Data to Bolster Fire Prevention & Safety in Your City

Using Data to Bolster Fire Prevention & Safety in Your City

More and more, local fire departments are partnering with community groups to disseminate crucial fire safety information into the hands of residents. Getting community organizations on board with fire safety tactics can significantly help improve resident understanding and utilization of fire preparedness and safety measures. By using data, every city and community can better understand how to bolster communication efforts to help residents make safer choices. More and more, local fire departments are partnering with community groups to disseminate crucial fire safety information.

How To Attract & Grow Businesses like the Economic Development Corporation in Clay County

How To Attract & Grow Businesses like the Economic Development Corporation in Clay County

As the President of the Clay County, Florida Economic Development Corporation, Bill Garrison has one goal: Promote the high-quality economy of Clay County. For Bill, it's important that he tell a story—a story that positions his community to attract new businesses and support existing ones. The challenge? Attracting new business is difficult—especially when working on a team of two people and facing limited resources. Learn how Bill is using data to understand existing economic and demographic conditions, and how he is using that information to make more efficient, data-driven decisions, ultimately growing the Clay County community. 

A Reformed School System: The Pride of Baltimore City

A Reformed School System: The Pride of Baltimore City

Baltimore is barely recognizable from the city it used to be. Its high school system has come leaps and bounds from where it was before, particularly when it comes to two of the most crucial performance metrics—graduation rates and dropout rates. When examining some of the measures taken during this period to boost high school student and graduate numbers, one might reasonably conclude that the ingenuity of the policies adopted by Baltimore City provides a shining example for other cities looking to bolster their own records on education.