Monday, February 22, 2010

Cityworks GIS Solutions for Property Management

The City of Coon Rapids, Minnesota, found a solution for managing their vacant and rental properties as well as general upkeep needs in Cityworks, by Azteca Systems, Inc., the leading provider of GIS-centric management solutions. Coon Rapids reports on the cost-effective, innovative nature of Cityworks and how it can be uniquely tailored to fit the needs of an organization.

Prior to deploying Cityworks, the Coon Rapids Housing and Code Enforcement Departments wanted to gain a better understanding of the impact vacant and rental properties had on city neighborhoods. Since the Public Works Department experienced such great results using Cityworks, the City wanted to incorporate the program into the Housing and Code Enforcement Departments as well. Now using Cityworks, service request and work order templates are created based on input received from staff, work orders are created on address points, and tasks are used to track the progress of properties with focus on vacant properties, rental properties, and general upkeep.

With Cityworks in place, City staff can view the status of a property in question at any time. Prior to Cityworks, Coon Rapids was unsure of the number of vacant properties throughout the City. Now, when vacant houses are reported, Public Works is notified and the property is entered in Cityworks triggering water shut-off to prevent damage from frozen pipes. The first winter season, the number of homes with burst water pipes dropped substantially.

“Adapting Cityworks to fill the City’s unique needs is proving to be a cost-effective, innovative solution for Coon Rapids,” states Cindy Hintze, GIS Specialist at the City of Coon Rapids. “Creative work order templates, tasks, custom fields, and custom inspections in Cityworks provide the City the information we need in a format that ca be easily retrieved, viewed, and shared.”

For rental properties, custom fields are used to capture information and tasks are used to track details about properties. Using Crystal Reports, work order reports are created so rental property details can be reviewed at a glance. For general upkeep needs, work orders for buildings and yards are created on address points within Cityworks mitigating issues such as weeds, overgrowth, debris, and structure maintenance. In addition, the City has found Cityworks to be useful in informing citizens about planned projects for the upcoming year along with Housing and Code enforcement issues in their specific neighborhoods.

“Our unique and innovative approach to asset and maintenance management is clearly the differentiator in places like Coon Rapids,” says Brian Haslam, President, Azteca Systems. “A non-modular, GIS-centric approach allows our customers to utilize Cityworks across a wide array of disciplines – from traditional outdoor, buried infrastructure to indoor facilities and property. Coon Rapids is a perfect example of how easy it is to apply Cityworks and without having to license individual modules, program flex-type technology, synchronize with GIS data or develop a costly integration.”


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