July 2nd, 2012

This past weekend, the City of New York took a big step forward to reaching more of NYC’s sustainability goals thanks to individuals and companies in the tech industry.  NYC Digital and the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability hosted Reinvent Green, the City’s first sustainability hackathon, at NYU-Poly in downtown Brooklyn.  Calling on the expertise, dedication and stamina of the talented technology and design community, the event featured over 100 participants, including developers and designers who put in 1,000 hours of donated time to help build digital tools and applications to support New Yorkers in leading greener, greater lives.

On Sunday afternoon, 13 teams demoed their individual projects– ranging from a site that helps locate recycling cans, to an app that promotes local farmers’ markets, to a competition-based neighborhood challenge platform. The teams competed for five prizes provided by a variety of corporate, City and nonprofit partners.  The judges were truly impressed with the caliber and diversity of projects, as each demonstrated a real commitment to utilizing technology as a means to improving the shared environment.  All apps used data from NYC’s OpenData platform (nyc.gov/data), and the City’s Office of Long-term Planning and Sustainability released a dozen new data sets for the event.  In the end, five winning teams were selected with the most outstanding projects in the following categories:

Best App for Crowdsourcing: Rebounty

    Sean Auriti, Peter Gerber, Johanna Levy, Lydia White

ReBounty is an easy way to find and list unwanted household and personal items in an effort to reduce the amount of consumer waste that is thrown out in urban areas every year. You can submit bounty by email, through the web, or through the iPhone app. You can also set up alerts to be notified when items you are looking for are posted near you.

Best App for Recycling: GreenCan

    Sarah Azpeitia, Jason Pearson, Matt Pestritto, Margaret Plaisted

Green Can will let users locate their nearest public recycling trash can, provide information for recycling organics and electronics and provide valuable feedback to the City of New York on future recycling can placement.

Best App for Transportation: Bike Pooling

    Marine Boudeau, Lori Hoffman, Isaac Lewis, George Magiros, Yannell Rodriguez 

Think of car pooling but for bikes. Find people who commute on the same path as you and start riding with them every morning/evening.  The app aims to make biking in the city safer, convert more people to bike commuting and help New Yorkers make new friends!

Best App for Parks and Public Spaces: FreshFixNYC

    Yan Krasny, Annie Lee, Pavel Riger, Jonathan Serrano, Dong Ik (D.I.) Shin

Enabling New Yorkers to have better and easier access to the Farmer’s Markets. Find fresh products from local farmers markets in NYC. Connect with green farmers. Become a green citizen.

Judges Pick: Green, Greener, Greenest

    Anton Granik and Matthew Ruttley

Competition between each neighbourhood as to who is the greenest! A filterable league table of green data, showing what each neighbourhood is strong at in terms of oil/energy consumption, trees planted etc. (many metrics can be added later). Shows what the neighbourhood should do to beat the one above it in the league table!

The sixth prize category — Popular Choice — will be decided by the public via the City of New York’s Facebook Page.  Be sure to encourage everyone you know to vote for the best of the best app on the Facebook Page through July 15!

We thank all of our partners and participants in Reinvent Green for a successful weekend and look forward to collaborating to address City challenges in the future.

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