Esri, Causeway Coast

Esri’s digital mapping software keeps public informed amid Covid-19

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is using GIS software to improve and maintain public services
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Nial McSorely and David Jackson,Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council; and Philip McLaughlin, Esri Ireland

25 August 2020

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is using Esri Ireland’s Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software to keep the public informed and support local business throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

In developing interactive resources through the platform, the council said it can improve and maintain public services to more than 144,000 citizens.

Using Esri’s mapping software ArcGIS, the council created the publicly available Open for Business map that shows what services and shops are currently available. The map also illustrates business opening hours, delivery and collection information and what safety measures the business has in place.

 

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A dedicated Covid-19 information and advice hub also built using ArcGIS is available on the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council website and homes a wide collection of resources with further information and advice for local businesses, vulnerable members of society and the wider community in the area.

The council’s Covid-19 Coordination Hub connects people to vital community support services and has had more than 1,200 referrals to date from Advice NI and the Northern and Western Health and Social Care Trusts.

“The biggest challenge for us as a council is in how to interpret the sheer volume of information that is available today,” said Nial McSorley, digital services manager, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council. “With Esri’s digital platform, we can compress all the different information channels into a single source, enabling us to meaningfully analyse and use data to make intelligent decisions.

“As we look to move on responsibly from Covid-19 restrictions, we will again leverage digital mapping to stimulate local tourism and support the reopening of businesses,” added McSorley. “Beyond that, we will continue to roll out GIS to further areas in the council and ensure all members of our staff can access and use the platform to enhance every aspect of the public services we deliver.”

Since its formation in 2015, the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council has worked with Esri Ireland to implement GIS across the entire organisation, digitally transforming its services to enhance engagement with the public and enable more informed decision making.

Esri’s software enables legal and finance teams to view all of the council’s agreements, leases and licences on one secure platform, eliminating the need to review unwieldy paper-based records and saving both time and money for the council. Its survey app, Survey123, enables fieldworkers to gather data on mobiles, tablets and laptops from anywhere in the borough.

Philip McLaughlin, client manager, Esri Ireland, said: “Covid-19 has highlighted the importance of clear communication between local government and the public. Having already rolled out GIS across many functions, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council was well-placed to leverage the power of digital mapping to create numerous rich information resources that are proving incredibly helpful to local businesses and residents.”

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