Press Release, 8-15-11

CMAP releases free MetroPulse iPhone app for on-the-go access to regional indicators data

August 15, 2011

Media Contact: Tom Garritano (312-386-8609 or

Today the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) released its free MetroPulse iPhone app, which allows users to view quality-of-life indicator data about the region's counties, municipalities, and Chicago community areas.

Find the MetroPulse app on the Apple App Store at Users can either select one location for which to build a dashboard of several indicators, or they can select several locations to compare by one indicator. The data gets displayed as grids or bar charts.

"We built the MetroPulse iPhone app to assist local decision makers so they can conduct a speedy needs analysis at a team meeting. Now, they can call up demographic, economic, environmental, safety, and other information quickly and easily," says CMAP executive director Randy Blankenhorn.

The MetroPulse iPhone app and MetroPulse website are products of The Regional Indicators Project, a collaboration between CMAP and The Chicago Community Trust. CMAP contracted with Philadelphia-based Azavea, Inc. for application code development.

While this app is not related to the Apps for Metro Chicago, Illinois contest -- in which CMAP and the Trust are participating partners -- it is an example of the data innovation that contest organizers seek to encourage.

Created by CMAP and the Trust, the MetroPulse website at is a simple but powerful portal into a vast warehouse of data on factors that shape quality of life in our seven-county Chicago region. It includes more than 1,000 interactive tables, charts, and maps based on the 100 distinct indicators that measure economic, environmental, social, or cultural conditions over time.

The site helps fulfill an important principle -- for government to improve access to information -- as recommended in the GO TO 2040 comprehensiveregional plan for metropolitan Chicago. MetroPulse helps policy makers, community leaders, news media, and the public to gather objective data that facilitates informed decision making. It also helps the region to track progress in implementing GO TO 2040.


About CMAP
The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) is the comprehensive regional planning organization for the northeastern Illinois counties of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will. By state and federal law, CMAP is responsible for producing the region's official, integrated plan for land use and transportation. The agency's innovative GO TO 2040 planning campaign develops and implements strategies to shape the region's transportation system and development patterns, while also addressing the natural environment, economic development, housing, education, human services, and other factors shaping quality of life. See for more information.

About The Chicago Community Trust
For 96 years, The Chicago Community Trust, our region's community foundation, has connected the generosity of donors with community needs by making grants to organizations working to improve metropolitan Chicago. In 2009, the Trust, together with its donors, granted more than $100 million to nonprofit organizations. From strengthening schools to assisting local art programs, from building health centers to helping lives affected by violence, the Trust continues to enhance our region. To learn more, please visit the Trust online at