Seattle launches data dashboards to show residents how the city is performing on key issues

Seattle City Hall. (Flickr Photo / Daniel X. O’Neil)

The City of Seattle unveiled seven data dashboards Thursday in an effort to give residents and government employees more insights into how the city is performing.

The Performance Seattle website tracks how well the city is meeting its goals on these core areas:

  • Basic City Services
  • Safe and Healthy Communities
  • Affordability and Livability
  • Homelessness Response
  • Capital Projects
  • Environment and Climate Change
  • Future of Work

Performance Seattle illustrates the city’s progress through a series of charts, graphs, and written accounts. The project was built over several months by more than 150 members of the city staff, according to Anthony Derrick, digital advisor to Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan.

“The Performance Seattle tool helps keep us grounded in where we are meeting expectations for the people we serve, particularly in the areas of service delivery and customer service,” said Leah Tivoli, the Performance Seattle project manager. “It can be frustrating for citizens who submit a request to city government not to understand how long it should take.”

Seattle officials are unveiling the performance dashboard as they field criticism from many in the business community, including Amazon, for struggling to get their arms around the city’s most pressing issues. The Seattle Metro Chamber of Commerce, Amazon, and others sought to elect new City Council candidates focused on data-driven solutions to issues, like homelessness, during last month’s election. That effort was largely seen as unsuccessful.

Performance Seattle was inspired by similar offerings in cities around the country, including Tacoma, Wash., Portland, Ore., and Boston.

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