311, New York’s non-emergency hotline, marked its tenth birthday on Monday just like every day — thanking callers “for calling the city of New York.”
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who implemented the center on March 9, 2003, shortly after taking office, thanked workers at the NYC311 center Monday morning in Lower Manhattan.
“For more than a decade, our administration has worked to implement technology solutions that help make real differences for New Yorkers,” Bloomberg said. “For nearly all that time, NYC311 has been among the most successful examples of that work.”
Since its launched, 311 is the number New Yorkers call with questions and complaints, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in nearly 180 languages. It fields more than 7,700 daily requests via phone, online and text message.
The call center has fielded more than 158 million calls in its lifetime, and provided information on more than 4,000 topics. Its 50 millionth call was on June 20, 2007, about how to open a day care center; the 100 millionth call reported an abandoned vehicle; its 150 millionth call, on Nov. 2, 2012, was about a downed tree.
Prior to NYC311, quality-of-life matters such as these often remained mired in the complaint phase, or were mistakenly called in to 911. Now, many major cities in the United States who are designing their own 311 systems.
In honor of the birthday, the Empire State Building will be lit yellow Monday night.