Cyclescape is a comprehensive online campaigning toolkit which will be "a hugely important step forward for all cycle campaigning groups". People subscribe to geographical locations (e.g. "Where I cycle") to infrastructure problems in those areas. Planning applications appear automatically, collision data is integrated, a library suggests resources relevant to a discussion, deadline listings, etc.
WHAT IS CYCLESCAPE?
Cyclescape is a new facility to provide cycle campaign groups around the UK (and hopefully beyond) and their members with a toolkit for easy discussion and resolution of campaigning issues. It aims to make it easier for people to get involved, get up to speed on any issue facing cyclists, work more productively with Local Authorities, and discover best practices and case studies from around the UK. Geography is at the heart of the system.
WHAT CAN PEOPLE DO ON IT?
We’re working to provide a ambitious platform that enables people to:
* Find out what’s going on in your area or where you cycle
* Get involved in as many or as few issues as you want
* Contribute to discussions easily without feeling overwhelmed
* Easily discover key resources and have best practice and guidance summarised
* See planning applications appear automatically on the map - that could create new barriers or opportunities for cycling
* Keep on top of deadlines, e.g. the date for a council consultation
* Analyse collision data
* See the history of any issue to avoid reinventing the wheel
* Work productively with others to create actual change on the ground
WHO WILL IT BE AVAILABLE TO?
Cyclescape will be available to any cycle campaign group in the UK, and hopefully beyond - the system is easy to translate. One of our aims with it is to provide a platform that will also assist the creation in new groups.
WHO HAS CREATED IT?
CycleStreets, who run the UK-wide cycle journey planner, CycleStreets. We come from a cycle campaigning background.
WHAT ARE THE MOTIVATIONS BEHIND THE PROJECT?
Primarily, we want to enable people who care about conditions for cycling to be able to get involved in campaigning for improvements, at whatever level of involvement they want.
Crucially, also, we want to make cycle campaigning much more effective. At the moment there are lots of different voices sometimes acting in an uncoordinated way. If discussions can be made more solution-focussed, working with Local Authorities will become easier.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN CONCEPTS IN THE SYSTEM
* Map – issues are located on a map. They can be a dot on the map (e.g. for lack of cycle parking), a line (e.g. a route) or a shape (e.g. the site of a proposed a new building)
* Issues – these are a location on the map where there is a problem or potential problem, including a brief description of the problem, e.g. lack of cycle parking, missing route, etc.
* Discussion threads – discussions connected to an issue.
* Library – where best practice, case studies, and guidance can be added and summarised. The idea is that relevant items can be ‘dragged into’ a thread, so that newer campaigners are up-to-speed quickly.
* Privacy – discussions are specific to a group (unless you set otherwise) and can be private or publicly-viewable.
* Tags - help categorise things.
WHEN WILL IT BE FULLY AVAILABLE?
We're now working to finish up and polish the system so that it’s as user-friendly as possible. Beta use is welcomed!
One group is using the system very actively as our test group, and this is generating lots of useful feedback.
GeoVation, provided funding of £27,000 in a dragon’s den –style competition in which CycleStreets pitched the concept amongst 155 other ideas. We were one of the seven winners. Other funders, listed on the base of the site, have also contributed.
We are seeking funds for a full-time developer. We have an enormous number of ideas on how to integrate campaigners, issues, Local Authorities, and cycling data together in clever and time-saving ways.
HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED?
Try it out! Beta use is warmly welcomed, and we're adding groups.
Help with the code - it's open source, Ruby on Rails. Proud users of OpenStreetMap too!