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The original item was published from 6/26/2018 10:09:35 AM to 7/11/2018 12:00:02 AM.

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Posted on: June 26, 2018

[ARCHIVED] NorfolkOpenData Expands to a Dozen Datasets

Nearly a decade of data on community appearance; information on city towing

NORFOLK, VA – Each year since 2010, a group of trained volunteers has assessed our city’s cleanliness by observing and scoring the amount of litter along fixed routes in each ward – 60 routes in all. 

Now the data from this effort – Keep Norfolk Beautiful’s Community Appearance Index ¬¬-- joins the growing number of data sets on NorfolkOpenData, the city’s data portal. This index, also known as the Litter Index, is now live on the site, along with information on all cars towed in the city. 

The Community Appearance Index is a tool designed by the national group Keep America Beautiful and used by KNB to visually assess the overall appearance of the community using litter as an indicator. The assessment requires a team of volunteers to drive 60 routes through Norfolk’s five wards over the course of a day and a half to assess the cleanliness of our city. Each route receives a score ranging from one – little litter – to four – lots of litter.

“It gives a snapshot of what our city looks like to any person who visits Norfolk,” said Alacia Wever, KNB’s Public Services Coordinator. 
This assessment helps KNB develop plans with residents and community leaders to reduce litter in specific neighborhoods.
Following the assessment one year, said KNB Project Coordinator Fleta Jackson, KNB worked with residents to target a specific means of reducing litter: tying trash bags before placing them in outdoor collection bins. 

“We created a campaign specific to the neighborhood,” Jackson said.

Adding these data to the portal ensures that residents “have all the tools they need to make a difference in keeping communities clean,” Jackson said.

Residents can sort and filter this dataset to see which routes scored the cleanest, or where litter prevention and cleanup efforts could have the most impact.

The towing dataset includes information from a city-owned and -created application designed to track vehicles towed in the city. It includes information such as Vehicle Identification Numbers or VINs, as well as the address the vehicle was towed from. It also provides the number of vehicles on city impound lots, where and why vehicles were towed, fees charged to the vehicle owners, and the disposition of the vehicle. The dataset excludes information on vehicles that are part of an investigation, on police impound lots, or on an extended hold. 

“We put as much information into this dataset as possible,” said Public Works’ Application Analyst Bernard Owens. 

These datasets will join data on public safety, neighborhoods, code enforcement, economic development and city employees on NorfolkOpenData. Feel free to view, download and manipulate this data. We provide this data as an affirmation of our commitment to transparency and community collaboration. We hope that you will use this data to improve your community, spark a business idea or just satisfy your curiosity.  Data will be updated and expanded often as we work to build a comprehensive open data portal.

For more information on OpenDataNorfolk, call 664-4007 or email

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