Carmen Duckens and Darian Price from the City of Columbus 311 Department (fourth and seventh from left) with FPCA officers and other residents at the November 2022 FPCA meeting.
One of the most important services that the Forest Park Civic Association provides is our close relationship with the City of Columbus and its officials.
With nealy 3,000 households in Forest Park and more than 100,000 households in the Northland Area, we are able to speak with a common voice that is larger than our voices as individuals.
As a result, we were happy to welcome representatives from the city’s 311 service at our November FPCA meeting. Carmen Duckens, 311 Service Manager, and Darian Price, a 311 Service Representative, provided a presentation the service’s new features.
The 311 service is your primary customer service connection to the City of Columbus. It is available online, by phone, via email, and with the 311 mobile app for your smartphone.
For 20 years, 311 has connected residents to the city’s services and resources. The improved website and the new CBUS 311 mobile app makes it easier to submit your service requests 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
You can look up your trash collection day, report code and animal violations, request information about social services, ask about licenses and permits, contact officials, and perform dozens of other similar tasks. Carmen noted that bulk trash pickup requests are the most popular requests from residents.
Notably, Columbus now will pick up old televisions. Previously, it did not accept older model tube TVs.
Carmen explained that her staff of 18 Customer Service Representatives handle nearly half a million 311 contacts a year. The representatives field the requests and route them to the appropriate city department. The 311 service is available live Monday through Friday and recently expanded its hours from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
After maintaining the same number of staff members since 2006, the 311 staff is expanding this year to handle a continual increase in contacts. They are actively hiring now to add staff. The staff expansion will allow the department to staff the center on Saturdays.
Carmen and Darian walked the attendees through the service and answered questions from Forest Park residents. She also distributed tote bags full of information about city services, magnets, and COVID-19 test kits.
The newly improved 311 version includes several convenient new features:
SMART GROUPING OF REQUESTS
Learn right away if an issue has already been reported. View the community map to see other requests in your area.
UNIQUE RESPONSE FIELDS
New information fields to speed the accurate routing of requests to the right areas.
PIN DROP ACCURACY
Describe your request with pinpoint accuracy by dropping a pin on the exact location where service is needed.
NEW INFORMATIONAL ARTICLES
Access the library of articles in the Knowledge base to learn about city processes and policies.