Civic Engagement to Improve Buffalo
Cities across the US use a 311 “non-emergency” system that allows residents to report everything from potholes to illegal dumpsites.
Locally, GObike has been encouraging the use of this service since it launched to help crowdsource safety improvements for biking and walking and rolling and using public transit. This mostly results in obvious reports, such as potholes, unplowed bike lanes and cycle tracks, glass and garbage in the street and cycle tracks, but also includes reporting such things as illegal parking on sidewalks and bike lanes and cycle tracks.
These reports not only help ensure people walking, biking, and rolling stay safe, they also help cities prioritize their limited resources. When the city analyzes data on calls and app usage, they can better prioritize their services.
Participate in National 311 Day!
We hope this event will encourage neighbors to show how easy it is to report hazards and things they’d like to see improved. People pay taxes in the city whether they choose to drive or not, so all infrastructure deserves attention for all users’ benefit.
Anyone can report a 311:
– Use the City’s “Buffalo 311” app
– Call 311 on your phone (You can speak to a real person Monday through Friday 9A-4P or leave a voicemail any other time. We suggest calling during business hours or using the app/website to make sure the request is recorded).
– You can also tag @311Buffalo on Twitter (tag us while you’re at it!) but this won’t necessarily count as an official request filed.
National 311 Day is a movement to teach residents how to communicate with their city and show you how to make 311 reports for the hazards you encounter. The idea is that in cities across the country, there will be local events such as community walks or bike rides, where people can get together and report hazards.
To make National 311 Day work, we need residents to host an event! An event doesn’t even have to include other people, and can even be a solo person on their own fitness run for instance. Feel free to be creative!
Information about hosting an event, joining an event and other FAQs can be found at 311day.org.
Ideas on how you can use 311 to improve biking and walking in Buffalo:
Stretch of road in need of repaving
Cars parked in bike lanes
Cars parked on sidewalks
Broken or missing sidewalks
City steps in need of repair