A Glance at #Whatisaroad Data

My name is Nayla Hatimy and I have been volunteering for the #whatisaroad project on data cleaning. Herein are my thought while interacting with the data.

My initial reactions when going through the data was, Wow! There are many people who are reporting about the potholes. I was surprised to see people tweeting with the hashtag — I did not expect people to take it seriously. In Mombasa where I come from, majority of people use Facebook more compared to Twitter. So I was shocked and impressed at the same time at how people would take the time to respond or send feedback with the hashtag #whatisaroad. This shows how Nairobi folks are responsive to issues and that generally shows there is potential to do a lot in this city.

Map of Potholes Locations in Nairobi Area

The first thing that caught my attention was the clarity of the photos taken — they were very clear which highlighted the potholes well. It could be that many people own smartphones with good cameras or that people are good at taking photos :) .

Potholes near offices like embassies, crucial points like junctions, and potholes near schools were also being highly reported.

Based on the data collected so far, I could see that most places people were tweeting about were the Nairobi suburbs. It could possibly be that people from the suburbs are keen to tweet and because they own cars, it is easier for them to see and take photos while driving, unlike people who use Matatus. Neighborhoods that stood out included Parklands, Westlands, Kilimani, Kileleshwa and Kitisuru. These are all suburbs in Nairobi County. Upper Hill road, kayole Spine Road and Arwings Kodhek were the most affected roads according to the data.

I feel this movement could change the road situations especially when the people reporting tag authorities involved like KenHa, which I saw happening quite a number of times. The reports will then directly reach officials and they can see first-hand what is happening out there and the kind of situations the roads are in. It can add the pressure to the officials to repair the roads and hence act faster on it. Rather than when you use the old methods which could take relatively a long time.

Keep tweeting at #whatisaroad and view reports here: https://whatisaroad.crowdmap.com

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