Maps, Open Data, & the Web

Chris Henrick

USF Urban Design, 10/6/2016

About Me...

Art School => Bike Messenger =>
Cartographer + GIS Specialist => Geo-Web Developer

Stamen Design

Featured Work


My Work and how it relates to:

  • Open Data
  • Civic Tech
  • Housing & Social Justice
  • Narrative


Am I Rent Stabilized?

am i rent stabilized animated gif

Language Translations

am i rent stabilized animated gif


  • Educate NYC tenants about rent regulation
  • Stop landlords from cheating the system
  • Motivate tenants to take action and get help
  • Use my own experience to help others


  • Lots and lots of page visits ~230,000
  • Featured by Time Out NYC, DNA Info, & others
  • Contacted by renters who've been reimbursed
  • Contacted by housing organizations who use it

The Northwest Bushwick Community Map

nwb map before redesign


  • Improving technical parts for better performance
  • Improving the overall design, UX, & site layout
  • Giving the map context with narrative


  • Provides housing organizers better access to data
  • Gave NWB more legitimacy with politicians
  • NWB won a small grant to do community outreach

Greenpoint Williamsburg Toxicity Map

toxicity map animated gif

Collaboration between

  • Neighbors Allied for Good Growth Brooklyn
  • Pratt’s Spatial Analysis and Visualization Initiative


  • Utilize Census and EPA data
  • History of industrial North Brooklyn
  • Educating the public about potential environmental hazards

The Displacement Alert Project Map

Collaboration with

  • Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development
  • NiJel

Indicators of Real Estate Speculation:

  • Sale Price vs. Avg Council District Sale Price
  • Number of construction permits (NYC DOB Jobs)
  • Loss in Rent Stabilized Units

Landscapes of Profit


  • Visualizing a proposed “Flip Tax” in NYC
  • Experiment with ACRIS data
  • Collaborate with NYC colleauges

What Have I Learned?

  • Creating this work isn’t easy
  • Data needs liberating
  • Maps have power
  • Collaboration is paramount
  • Non-profits and community groups need tech help

Tools of the Trade

Advice For Learning

  • Start out with the basics
  • Learn one thing at a time
  • Learn by making things
  • Learn from / with others

Thank you!

Twitter: @chrislhenrick

Email: chrishenrick [at] gmail


This presentation: