Data Assistance Requests

In response to a growing need for specialized data assistance from government employees in the Manhattan Borough President’s Office and Community Board offices, BetaNYC has created a system to address these challenges with our team of Civic Innovation Fellows. 

Our Data Assistance Requests (DAR) form helps us gather your challenges and helps us track your requests.

Our Data Assistance Requests process helps provide much-need services to Borough Presidents and Community Board employees whom have large workloads and little time to explore new technical / analytical tools. This program also provides real world opportunities for our Civic Innovation Fellows (CUNY Service Corps members) to apply their technical and analytical skills. Our services are wholistic — BetaNYC provides the mentoring, tools, infrastructure, analysis, data guidance, and help provide writing or letters to city or state agencies/authorities.

Since October 2018, when we launched the form, we have addressed over 30 requests. We have serviced the Manhattan Borough President’s Office by processing requests from Land Use, Community Affairs, and the Policy Department (Technology, Economic Development, Education, and Arts & Cultural Affairs). Also we have addressed requests from Community Boards for demographic maps, community resource database creation, and 311 data analysis, addressing the question: is CB XX the noisiest CB?

When aligned, we take on requests from city-wide non-profits, but these projects need to be in partnership with the Manhattan Borough President’s Office.

Help us by letting us help you. If you are a Borough President, Council Member, or Community Board staff member, we welcome your requests. Our time to review your request two to three business days. Addressing your request depends on you type of request.

Types of Solutions:

  • Data Processing & Data Scraping, ie the process of making data useable for analysis
  • Letters to Agencies and Meeting Coordination
    1. Data Improvement, recommendations on how agencies can improve their data.
    2. Data Liberation, requests on how to release data with what values to include.
  • Open Data Report, an analysis of open data sources for you to include in testimony, reports, etc.
  • WebMap or Embedded Map, we can help you transform your data into a web map that you can embed in your website.
  • WebTool or App, we can help you create a light weight digital tool to
  • Print Map, depending on the size and format of meeting, data, or event, we can help prepare your data for printing.

Form link: or 

Examples of Data Assistance Request

Below, you will find a collection of solutions generated from our data assistance request process.

Solutions are coded on a scale from 1 – 5; this denotes the technical difficulty level.

  1. Basic data and mapping literacy, no coding required
  2. Involved data literacy, no coding involved
  3. Intermediate data literacy, APIs, some coding may be required
  4. Advanced data literacy, APIs and/or coding
  5. Extensive coding required

Project Vulnerable Religious Facilities

A map that recognizes buildings classified as religious facilities not protected by historic district designation or individual landmark status to show how vulnerable these facilities may be.

Housing Court Filings: Letter to Agency

A letter that requested the release of housing court filings data as an approach to a more transparent data for the public.

Ridership Data

A report containing subway ridership numbers for 2,3 line in order to share with the community for the new proposed housing development in Lenox Ave.

Community Boards Membership Map

A dynamic map indicating a detailed analysis of community board members from each community board.

Boundaries Map

A tool displaying ten overlapping administrative boundaries across New York City with various filters including zip codes, school districts, and more.

Open Data Improvement

A data improvement report which helped the Department Of Education recognize missing data in the Open Dat Portal in order to to have a more public and transparent data.

Print Maps

A printed map for Manhattan residents to put suggestions in order to make Manhattan more age-friendly.

CB3 Demographics Map

A Choropleth map displaying the demographics of Community Board 3.