East Ayrshire Council has become one of the first local authorities in the UK to use a geographical information system as its graphical user interface for key self-service applications.
Visitors to the council's website can track the progress of any planning application in the area by clicking on an interactive map.
The GUI can be used to access information held on the planning system before planning applications reach the consultation stage.
The system identifies the development options, whether housing, industry or retail, for every building or block of buildings in the authority's catchment area.
East Ayrshire's application for members of the public to report faults with street lighting and roads is the latest application to be linked to the GIS. By clicking on the map, users can generate either a street lighting or road fault form.
East Ayrshire will use its GIS to respond more quickly to its citizens' needs and to capture information that it would previously have missed. The council said, "This project is all about providing an access route to integrated information rather than having to go through multiple systems."
East Ayrshire chose a system called Autodesk Mapguide to integrate its existing mapping software with its business applications. Systems integrator IME UK was used to integrate the applications.
Autodesk Mapguide uses OpenGIS standards, running on SQL Server, to make it easier to integrate applications from different suppliers.
The IT department and IME have deployed Autodesk Mapguide both internally and externally in a cut-down version called Autodesk Mapguide.