Arlington Named Top Digital County for 2017

Published on July 20, 2017

  • Second consecutive win of top spot for counties with 150,000 — 249,999 residents

  • Honored for open government, planning, civic engagement, cyber security, operations, mobility, shared services and collaboration

  • Digital Destiny, ConnectArlington recognized

Arlington County is the No. 1 digital county in the nation for a second straight year. The Center for Digital Government and National Association of Counties 2017 award recognizes Arlington for its best technology practices in areas of open government, transparency, citizen engagement, cyber security and operations. Arlington received the highest award for counties in the 150,000 — 249,999 population category based on its submission to the Digital Counties Survey.

"This award acknowledges not only the County's commitment to open, accessible and transparent government and to encouraging engagement, but also the creativity and hard work of a County staff that is innovative in its approach to digital services," Arlington County Board Chair Jay Fisette.

Comprehensive look at technology plans and programs

The annual Digital Counties Survey Award takes a comprehensive look at the technology programs and plans of counties across the nation. This year, Arlington won the top ranking for its work on behalf of residents, Arlington businesses and institutions, and staff in several areas. Among the achievements was the County's Open Government Program, which uses technology to make government transactions, planning and decision-making more accessible and transparent. New for the program in 2017 was the creation of the popular Library app, and the establishment of an Open Data Advisory Group. The County also was cited for live-streaming County Board Meetings, work sessions and commission meetings.

Digital Destiny campaign, ConnectArlington recognized

The award also recognized the Department of Technology's "Defining Arlington's Digital Destiny Campaign," created to establish a future road map for a fast and ever-changing digital world. The ongoing campaign hosts a series of public discussions with residents, businesses and industry thought leaders to explore how Arlington can harness the Digital Revolution to enhance the quality of life for those who work, live and visit here. Digital Destiny public sessions have focused on technology in the areas of mobility, learning, and aging. The goal is to increase awareness and generate new ideas and strategies for an increasingly digital world.

The County's dark fiber network, ConnectArlington,  also was lauded for its secure, seamless support of government operations and links to Arlington Public Schools, along with its second phase strategic expansion to include Arlington businesses.  The ConnectArlington network grew from an initial plan to link all County facilities and those of Arlington Public Schools through high-speed broadband. Designs for the infrastructure were expanded to create a dark fiber network that could serve the region's innovative high-tech and business communities and boost the County's economic development efforts.

Arlington County will be presented with the award at the National Association of Counties' annual conference on July 22 in Columbus, Ohio.

Learn more about how Arlington County is making advances with technology.