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Nonprofit opens vast database to public

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A nonprofit organization that revitalizes communities by investing in affordable housing, schools and businesses is making the vast store of data it has amassed to guide its decisions available to the public through an online data mapping tool, PolicyMap. PolicyMap is an outgrowth of the work of The Reinvestment Fund, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that has considerable expertise in gathering and analyzing data, including statistics on home sales, lending practices and demographics. In the past, The Reinvestment Fund has collaborated with government agencies and nonprofits that make grants, as well as lenders and government planners, to help them channel investment where it's needed most. Now, real estate developers, brokers and agents, and prospective home buyers can tap into the wealth of information the fund's gathered on home sales and values, neighborhood conditions, income, employment, schools and a mind-boggling array of other statistics, often right down to the Cens...