In an act of rapid turnaround, deadline-driven development, Dean, Cheryl and I bring you a map of all structurally deficient bridge in Washington state.
Thursday night the I-5 bridge over the Skagit River collapsed and fell into the water. Yes, this is a big deal because I-5 is the main corridor through the state. Two cars fell in but everyone survived. This news broke while Dean and I were enjoying a lovely dinner at Ben and Katrina's house after work, so naturally we turned her dining room into a breaking news headquarters: I maintained the social feeds while Katrina worked with homepage producers to build out the package and Dean started working immediately on the map (I jumped in after our social media producer go to the office).
We worked all night on the map, spending most of our time attempting to get PDF data into a spreadsheet before we got a better data set from our data editor. We started with a Google Fusion table and quickly moved over to Mapbox (thankfully, we knew what we were doing after building our state parks map).
We used basically the same technology I described in my state parks post. We launched the map on Friday morning then updated a second-iteration version Saturday that has filters to see: bridges built more than 50 years ago, bridges with low sufficiency ratings, facture-critical bridges and high-trafficked fracture-critical bridges.
This one of our first heavily deadline-driven news apps projects and probably the best job we've done of really telling a story through our apps. We're getting good at dumping a bunch of stuff into a well-packaged space (maps, political guides), and are trying to get better at truly finding the stories within those data dumps. Hats off to Cheryl and Dean!