The Detroit Police Department is launching a new app today aimed at helping it better communicate and interact with the people living and working in the Motor City.
The DPD Connect app (available for Andriod and iPhone) will provide streamlined pathways for users to report tips to police, a phone directory for the city’s public safety agencies, links to the police departments social media channels, and news/crime statistics. Users will be able to leave anonymous tips (delivered through an independent third-party service to ensure anonymity) and also access local public safety numbers, such as community officers and neighborhood precincts.
“The whole theme is to better connect people to the police department,” says Will McDowell, a business analyst with Detroit Labs, which built the app.
The Detroit Police Department approached the downtown Detroit-based software firm to create the mobile app earlier this year. McDowell oversaw the construction of the app, which was worked on by a large team from Detroit Labs including five of the company’s interns.
Detroit Labs has hired 30 people over the last year, expanding its staff to 75 people. It recently moved from the M@dison Building into a bigger office in the M@dison Building (1520 Woodward) earlier this year. Many of its new hires come from the company’s apprentice program, which trains software developers and paves the way for full-time employment at the company. The firm is also looking to hire established software developers.
“We’re always looking for good developers,” says Bill Camp, who works in planning and development at Detroit Labs.
Local businesses are being encouraged to bid for contracts to operate concession and vendor services on Belle Isle Park. Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources is hosting a series of informative meetings to assist potential vendors in applying to do business on the largest city-owned island park in the U.S.
According to the DNR, available business opportunities include food services, outdoor sports equipment rentals, and beach equipment rentals. Interested businesses must attend one of the following meetings in order to be considered for a contract:
Golf driving range (Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 9 a.m.)
Watercraft/bike/snow sport rentals (Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m.)
Porta-Potty and hand-wash rentals (Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 3 p.m.)
Mobile food and mobile ice cream (Thursday, Dec. 18 at 9 a.m.)
Mobile toy and beach rental (Thursday, Dec. 18 at 10:30 a.m.)
Carriage ride (Thursday, Dec. 18 at 11:30 a.m.)
Kids’ Row concession store (Thursday, Dec. 18 at 1 p.m.)
Athletic complex (Friday, Dec. 19 at 9 a.m.)
The hour-long meetings will be held at Flynn Pavilion, located on the island’s Lake Tacoma, which is near the intersection of Picnic Way and Loiter Way. Representatives from the DNR will be on hand to answer any questions prospective bidders may have about operating on the island in 2015.
2015 marks the first full year that Belle Isle will be under state control since the city of Detroit leased the island park to Michigan under a 30-year deal in 2014. The deal was pursued and signed by former Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr. An $11 Recreation Passport is now required to enter the park, a year-long pass that grants access to all 102 State Parks throughout Michigan.
Winners of the bids will join Detroit Disc Golf. That group successfully negotiated with the DNR to operate a disc golf course on Belle Isle in 2014.
Source: Model D Media