Civic Software

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Please note that this page is being transitioned to the Civic Commons Marketplace

A primary goal of Civic Commons is to make it easy for jurisdictions at all levels to deploy low-cost, reusable software, using open standards, open protocols, and open source code wherever possible. Pooling resources reduces costs and avoids duplicated effort; equally importantly, it helps make civic IT expertise more cumulative and portable across jurisdictions, for civil servants, for citizens, and for vendors.

Civic Commons will initially focus on working with government entities to identify, document, and relicense technology currently in use. As a start, projects that have been prepared for sharing are then listed here in the Civic Commons directory of applications so that other government entities can find applications they need, as well as contribute their own.

If you would like to suggest a technology or category here, please get involved and contact us or contribute directly to the list below.  

Public Data & Notices
(See Open Data Guidelines for standards and example sites.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
Federal Register 2.0 (US Government) The code that runs the Federal Register. Ruby, Bundle, Rails 2.3.8, the Sphinx search engine, MySQL, ruby MySQL bindings. github AGPLv3 See details page. See readme for overview. Back end customized to the GPO/OFR XML feed.
Federal It Dashboard (US Government) Site that tracks IT spending and effectiveness across projects and departments. PHP, Drupal TBD TBD See details page. Code is being open sourced (late 2010 or early 2011).
Track DC (Washington, DC) Site to "track the performance of individual agencies, learn more about agencies Key Performance Indicators, Budget, Spending and News, access agency Data and Connect to the agency." Oracle, .Net, some proprietary Flash components, etc. TBD TBD See details page.
Data Platforms list A listing of open source projects for managing open data repositories, catalogs, and other resources. See list. See list. See list. See list.
Drupal CMS list A listing of government websites using Drupal for content management and other purpose See list. See list. GPL 2 See list. There's also a gov-specific Drupal distro called OpenPublic
Transit & Transportation
(See Public Transit, Cycling, and Traffic for standards and example sites.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
OpenTripPlanner An open source multimodal trip planner and system map. See for more information. See developer site See developer site LGPL See details.
One Bus Away
Real-time transit information platform. See
Google Code
Apache 2.0

Bus Circulator App Schedule/location tracking site for a small municipal bus system. Google App Engine; NextBus API (may drop this dependency though) github TBD
See details page.
Geographic Applications
(See Geographic Applications for standards and example sites.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
Enterprise Addressing System (San Francisco, CA) Spatial geocoding and management for a database of street addresses. Python; Javascript. TBD TBD, but likely Simplified BSD or something similar. See details page. Working on code release now. See here for more.
(See also the Legislation page.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
Open Legislation (NY State Senate) Software, including web and mobile apps, for giving citizens real-time access to the legislative process. See it in action. Java / J2EE Web Application; Maven2; Lucene; Google App Engine / AWS. See details page. github GPL/BSD hybrid See details page.
The State Decoded Software for publishing state legal codes. LAMP stack, more details forthcoming - GPL has been proposed See
Citizen Services
(See Open311, Emergencies.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
PDX Reporter formerly "Citizen Reports" (Portland, OR) iPhone app for reporting and requesting service calls regarding city infrastructure. Apple iPhone. Google Code Hosting GPLv2 See app page.
PDX Reporter (Portland, OR) Android app for reporting and requesting service calls regarding city infrastructure. Android Smartphones. Google Code Hosting GPLv2 See app page.
Voting Information Project Data site providing information with which to develop voting information apps. Hosted Site; runs on Google Apps.
Various. This site enables third parties to develop apps that supply information to voters ("Where do I vote? What's on the ballot? How can I find out more information?"). It provides voting information in a standardized format (see the 2010 data so far) so people can develop apps (e.g., the Virginia Polling Place gadget), and they'll even help you with the app development. The format is the Election Info Standard, which is different from Election Markup Language (see their FAQ for why).
IT Infrastructure
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
DC Apps - Apps Catalog (Washington, DC) Online app catalog: people submit or download apps that use government data. E.g., parking meter locations, historic data, emergency info. Google App Engine. github TBD See details page.
OpenStack A fully open-source cloud computing infrastructure, based on open standards. TBD launchpad Apache 2.0 Has broad corporate backing, as well as NASA involvement. Very active as of August 2010, but some major components still in development. 1st release scheduled for 21 October 2010.
Human Resources / Personnel Profiles / Directories
(See also the OpenSocial Web Standards.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
Open Directory (NY State Senate) NYSenate OpenDirectory is intended to be a lightweight web-based service that allows Senate employees to easily create and share personal profile as well as organizational contact/project information with one another, and to allow all New Yorkers to access that information.

By implementing both fine grained privacy controls and a robust data API the OpenDirectory empowers both senate employees as well as civic researchers, reporters, and developers to better serve their constituents.

Java; SOLR; Tomcat; Varnish github Dual GPL/BSD Similar to Drupal4Gov and State Dept efforts; discussing collaboration.

Programmed with the Eclipse IDE using Maven2 project management. A pre-configured virtual box environment is available to help developers get started.

For more information please consult the Redmine wiki or drop by #nyss_opendirectory @ on IRC.

(See Schools API.)
(See Crime for standards and example sites.)
Land Use
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
OpenTreeMap (Azavea) Urban street trees have myriad proven benefits for communities. OpenTreeMap provides an easy-to-use public inventorying platform to collaboratively contribute to a map of a community’s tree population. OpenTreeMap can be used in a single municipality or cover a broader geographic region, anywhere in the world. Python / Django; Javascript. GitHub GNU GPL, version 3 or later See details page.
(See Building Permits and Zoning and Cosm: real-time community-based planning.)
Health and Sanitation
(See NYC Restaurant Inspections data (via NYC DataMine).)
Operations, Budgeting, Management
(See LEDES Electronic Budget XML Format.)
Elected Officials
(See Elected Officials for standards and example sites.)
Item Description Requires Code License Notes
DistrictBuilder (Azavea) Web-based software for encouraging public participation and transparency in redistricting of state and local legislative district boundaries. Python / Django; Javascript (JQuery and OpenLayers). GitHub Apache 2.0. In collaboration with the Public Mapping Project. See details page.
Other Category Resource Pages
Citizen Resource Management
Traffic Accidents
Service Delivery
Health Inspection
Building Lots
Urban Planning
Public Meetings


Other References