EDF & Google Earth- Mapping Outreach for Natural Gas Leaks

I came across this really interesting new mapping initiative on the Environmental Defense Fund’s site, that maps natural gas leaks, mostly methane, in cities across the US. This outreach is a collaboration of EDF and Google Earth, which is using “specially equipped Google Street View cars” to collect information. This project is still in it’s start-up stage, so there are only a few cities but more are being added and you can also nominate your city.

The map shows the areas of methane leaks and indicates whether the leak has a low, medium or high impact on the environment. It is color coordinated and easy to understand. Seeing all the points of interest across the mapped cities of Boston, Syracuse, Staten Island, Indianapolis, and Burlington, make you think what it happening in your closet city.

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Here is the map for Boston! Check out the other cities and nominate yours! Go to http://www.edf.org/climate/methanemaps/city-snapshots or click here.

Posted by Intern Eva Gerrits. Information from http://www.edf.org. Contact gis@vertices.com


NYrestroom – Peace of mind is just a click away

Traveling in and around New York City will be a lot less stressful especially when you find yourself in that desperate time of need… searching for a public bathroom. This site and app, which can be accessed by any device, maps out all the public restrooms around NYC, and even shares photos of how they look. What makes this map different from other public access maps is that anyone can add points in, share photos, and update at anytime. This community map can be constantly updated with the help of whoever is in the city and wants to use it. This map was featured in The New Yorker, and put together in only 3 days, pretty impressive. Check out the site yourself, and add any point just by signing in as a guest.

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Posted by Eva Gerrits, Intern. Click here to view site. Contact at gis@vertices.com

Potholes wreaking havoc to your car? Map ‘em.


With the onslaught of snow and the weary winter weather, numerous potholes are popping up everywhere on roads and highways. Recently, there have been increasing reports of potholes. Potholes have even been causing many drivers to be stranded on roads and highways in the icy weather with flat tires. Potholes are also a potential cause of automobile accidents, traffic problems, and other types of car damage. Drivers are unaware of presence of potholes and danger that they are facing.

To better inform municipal governments and other drivers unaware of the presence and dangers of potholes, we have created a community map that can be accessed by the mobile web or via the Mappler app. There are two maps; for users in New Jersey and New York City. Community members can log details for potholes such as location, size, depth, width and approximate location of the pothole on the road. This information can be used by municipal governments to get to working on patching up the potholes and start easing road hazards.

“Community Participatory Mapping is a great method of how people can share location based information and communicate effectively,” said Dr. Im, a community participatory mapping expert who had also created Hurricane Sandy Gas Station Map in 2012, which allowed storm-struck locals to track gas availability on their smartphones. He had also created NYRestroom map in 2006.

Please help us spread the word to get as many participants as possible!

Share links
NJ Potholes: http://mappler.net/njpothole
NYC Potholes: http://mappler.net/nycpothole

For more information, contact us at Vertices at gis@vertices.com or (732) 418-9135.

Juhi Mawla, Intern, gis@vertices.com 



NYC Ratopia Restaurant Map




You might not want to eat out again after seeing this map. The latest map we’re featuring show New York City’s restaurants and their respective citations for rodent appearances. Steven Melendez took restaurant inspection data from the Health Department  since Jan. 1, 2013 and counted the total number of inspected restaurants and number of restaurants that received citations for “evidence of mice or live mice” or “evidence of rats or live rats” in that time period for each zip code.


Read the full article and check out the map here.


Juhi Mawla, Intern, gis@vertices.com

Rat Information Portal

Rat Information Portal

New Yorkers, not sure if there is a rodent problem in your building? Check out the Rat Information Portal (aptly abbreviated to RIP) created by NYC’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Rats rarely exist on a single property. Getting rid of them requires a community effort.

RIP is a web-based mapping application where users can view rat inspection data. Findings from the Health Department’s inspections are searchable by address, or by borough, block and lot (BBL). You can use the map tools to find information about properties on the map.

Read the full article here and check out the map.

Juhi Mawla, Intern, gis@vertices.com

Reducing CO2 Emissions in NYC Buildings

Lab Mapper Screen Shot

Did you know that the majority of New York City’s CO2 emissions comes from buildings? Not exactly what you expected from an auto-dependent city? Heating, cooling, lighting, and general operations can use a vast amount of energy. To meet the goal of reducing carbon emissions by 30% before 2030, New York City is targeting energy reduction in the city’s largest buildings. Since 2010, buildings 50,000 sq. ft. and over have been required to benchmark their energy and water use as part of Local Law 84.

The Energy Locus map was created in collaboration with Mappler and the Community Mapping Initiative, a student interest group at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Rutgers. The map includes the 2011 EPA Energy Star score for hundreds of commercials buildings in New York City that were required to comply with Local Law 84.

This map allows users to search for addresses and determine a listing’s Energy Star Score. Buildings with a score of 75 and higher indicate the facility performs better than at least 75% of similar buildings nationwide when accounting for weather and operating conditions.

Source: http://lab.mappler.net/

Juhi Mawla, Intern, gis@vertices.com

Hurricane Sandy: Who died, Where and Why?

Picture1Hurricane Sandy sure did wreck havoc into our lives! But it is over now and things have been fleetingly getting back to normal. The economic, health and environmental impact of the storm are just beginning to be felt but that is for the government to worry about. There are individuals however who will never forget Sandy. People who will never get to see their loved ones again, thanks to Sandy.

This interactive map showing names of people who died, where they died, nature of their death and their age was first published by the New York Times based on data that was collected as deaths were being reported.

Visit theguardian for downloadable data on all reported deaths across the continent.

Data Source: The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com

Renice Obure, Research Intern, gis@vertices.com

Visualising and tracking homicide cases in New York City

Reports filed at the New York Police Department and in the courts can be now be visualized in an interactive map that has been released by the new york times. The map outlines the frequencies and more vital information on the crime report.

Read the full story from NY Times here

Source: NY Times NY REGION


Renice Obure, Research Intern, Vertices, gis@vertices.org

New York Health Department Restaurant Ratings Map

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene performs unannounced sanitary inspections of every restaurant at least once a year. This interactive map displays a letter grade for each inspected establishment, which is representative of a violation point system. The interactive map offers individuals with the opportunity to explore the letter grades of all of the restaurants in the city, along with violation descriptions.

Check out the NY Health Department Restaurant Ratings interactive map!

Lisa MacCarrigan, Research Assistant, Vertices, gis@vertices.com