With the publication of the online Mid-South Greenways User Friendly map in 2011, we demonstrated in an interactive way the parks and trails offered in our region. The online map helped users plan greenways trips, make local connections, and grasp the importance of a regional system by demonstrating the benefits of larger scale connectivity. However, with the launch of this map in 2011, we immediately recognized its accessibility limitations, and we brainstormed ways to take this tool to the next level.
We wondered: How could we provide this information to users when they are outdoors without access to a computer?
If we were able to reach these people, we could encourage them to extend their trip, help them discover new and exciting parks, trails, and destinations, and improve their outdoors experience by providing seamless navigation. We saw the development of a nimble and user-friendly smart phone application as an innovative and sustainable solution to this problem with the potential to significantly improve access and use of existing parks and greenways.
This dream became a reality thanks to the generous developers participating in GiveCamp Memphis (Ben Deming, Daniel Lissner, Forrest Williams, James Giles IV, James Kegel, and Harrrison Witt). During the February 2014 weekend retreat, the team of mobile app specialists used our dataset to build a cutting edge app for both iPhone and Android devices. Their spirit of giving has no end, as they are now in the process of making the application code open-source, so that other developers to learn from the code, leverage it for other projects, and contribute their own work back to our project.
Mid-South Greenways is designed to help you seamlessly navigate the Mid-South’s growing network of greenspaces. You can turn on map layers for parks, trails, bike lanes and shared lanes to illuminate the best biking routes and popular outdoor destinations. With the auto-locate feature, you can see which greenspaces are closest to you. With the weather feature, you can be better prepared for changes in the variable Mid-South climate. And, with several popular destinations preloaded into the menu, you will surely discover some new and interesting sites.
We are looking to update the app annually, and to fund this we have started a campaign on www.ioby.org If you like the app, donate today!