Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Northern Ireland - FixMyStreet

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Hello NALIL!

I'm writing from the not-for-profit mySociety. I thought your readers might be interested to know that our website FixMyStreet.com now covers Northern Ireland - so the residents of North Antrim can now report potholes, faulty street lights, and any other street problem through the site, and it will go to the right contact in the local council.

FixMyStreet launched in 2007, covering Great Britain only, due to conditions of the funding that helped pay for it. But with those restrictions in the past, the only impediment to spreading across the whole of the UK was time and resources. It had long been on our own wishlist to do so, but time was scarce. Fortunately, a project we undertook for Channel 4 last year used very similar code to FixMyStreet, and has allowed our developer Matthew Somerville to repurpose it and finally bring NI onto FixMyStreet.

The idea behind the site is a simple one: people don't always know who to contact when they experience a problem like fly tipping, graffiti or broken paving. With FixMyStreet all they have to do is pinpoint the issue on a map - or allow the site to automatically geolocate them - and their message is sent off to the right place. FixMyStreet covers all 26 local NI councils and the central Roads Service, and works quite happily on a mobile browser or desktop. Users' reports are also published online, meaning that other local people can read, discuss and advise on what's been reported in their own area.

With Northern Ireland having been added only at the end of last week, their pages are looking strangely sparse, but we're sure that's not because there's nothing to report! If your readers would like to give the site a go, they should visit FixMyStreet.com and enter their own postcode. This will bring up the local map where any reported issues can be viewed, or a new one created.