Home to parts of Stanford University as well as several high-tech companies, Palo Alto, California prides itself on being a hub of innovation. In this same spirit, Palo Alto’s city government strives toward greater efficiency and better public service through technology.
One of the areas Palo Alto initially targeted for technological improvement was construction permitting and inspection. Long waits and laborious back-and-forth with multiple city departments were frustrating and expensive for developers, business owners, and architects. Palo Alto’s upgraded Development Services office was created to address these issues, establishing a single office for all construction-related processes. Developers and architects were relieved.
However, construction often affects the lives of nearby residents and commuters as well, so Palo Alto Development Services also wanted to ensure that citizens could easily provide feedback about construction projects. They launched a pilot program using a Textizen prompt on signs at construction sites, allowing passersby to learn more about and offer feedback on the project