ADVICE

SMART system getting small problems fixed fast

PBN PHOTO/DAVID LEVESQUE
SMARTER APPROACH: Donald Perez, Providence Downtown Improvement District safety team leader, uses the SMART system in Kennedy Plaza.

By Rhonda Miller
PBN Staff Writer

Posted 2/4/13

When Donald Perez hits the street in downtown Providence wearing his yellow jacket, a utility belt with an iPhone, flashlight, radio, disposable gloves and dining guides, he’s pretty much ready for anything.

“I’ve had people tell me about someone suspicious in a parking lot trying to open cars or about an intoxicated person sleeping in the doorway, or about graffiti,” said Perez, safety team leader for the Downtown Improvement District and one of three people in the city with an iPhone with an app that allows access to the new SMART system.

The three phones are the on-the-street feed in a pilot program launched in Providence by the operations management company Block by Block.

The SMART system connects the Downtown Improvement District ambassadors with city departments and organizations outside the government, such as National Grid. Work orders with the time, date, photos and details whiz through the database-driven SMART system and allow everyone concerned to immediately be part of the process of getting the problem fixed.

“If I see graffiti or a light out, I pull out my phone, take a picture of it, add a short, detailed summary and put in what’s to be done,” Perez said. “Once it’s in the system, we’re all on the same page.”

The work order goes to the police if it’s a safety issue, to National Grid if it’s related to an electrical outage or to Providence Public Works if it’s a city repair issue.

Even though it’s been too short a time to expect major changes since the SMART system launched in October, Lisa Newman Paratore, owner of the Homestyle shop on Westminster Street, said it’s a positive addition for property owners.

“No one has come in and complained lately. So to me that means the yellow jackets are able to handle things much more quickly,” Paratore said of the members of the Downtown Improvement District teams who patrol for cleanliness and safety issues and are known by their bright, yellow attire.

“If they see something, it goes directly into their iPhone and they can get cracking and get it taken care of,” said Paratore, a member of the board of the Downtown Improvement District. “It definitely keeps things from falling off anyone’s radar and it holds everyone accountable.

Next Page
Calendar
PBN Hosted
Events

Join PBN and two panels of successful female executives, business owners and entrepreneurs as we delve into what women should do to advance their careers, and become leaders in the corporate world and their own enterprises.
  • Book of Lists Party
    Save the date - January 15, 2015 for PBN's Book of Lists Party at the Providence ...
  • Best Places to Work
    Enrollment is now open for the 7th annual Best Places to Work program. Winners w ...
Advertisement
Purchase Data
Book of Lists
Lists
Book of Lists cover
PBN's annual Book of Lists has been an essential resource for the local business community for almost 30 years. The Book of Lists features a wealth of company rankings from a variety of fields and industries, including banking, health care, real estate, law, hospitality, education, not-for-profits, technology and many more.
Data icons
Data can be purchased as single lists, in either Excel or PDF format; the entire database of the published book, in Excel format; or a printed copy of the Book of Lists.
  • Purchase an e-File of a single list
  •  
  • Purchase an e-File of the entire Book of Lists database
  •  
  • Purchase a printed copy of the Book of Lists
  •  
    National
    Local
    Latest News
    Advertisement