The Department of Transportation on Thursday launched its National Transit Map, which includes transit data, a participation map, and interactive mapping apps.
The map includes data from 270 transit agencies that provided information on more than 398,000 stops and 10,000 routes.
“Measuring connectivity starts with having good data about where America’s transit connects–where transit stops are, how frequent transit service is, and where transit routes go,” Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx wrote in a blog post.
The National Transit Layer features open, machine spatial and tabular data about transit networks across the United States. The National Participation Map shows where the agencies are located that provided data for the map. The Interactive Mapping Apps have tools for measuring distances between transit stops, trip frequency, and time-of-day coverage.
The DOT spoke to users about releasing the map during a twitter chat Monday.
This map is the first version and is expected to have two updates within 2016. The former transit-focused map was released in 2004 and provided only the location of fixed-guideway transit.
“We have work still to do to ensure that each transit agency has this kind of data so we can make sure the map represents all transit service,” Foxx wrote. “We’re taking an iterative approach to building this important asset, and we are looking forward to demonstrating progress in future releases.”
The map supports the DOT’s Ladders of Opportunity initiative to promote transportation networks to connect citizens to jobs, education, health care, and other essentials. The data from the map is available for app developers, transit workers, and commuters to use.
“The Transit Map truly shows the power of collaborating and sharing data,” Foxx wrote. “Data is most powerful when we put it into practice. We want you to dive into this data and use it for your own projects.”
Foxx said that businesses could use the information to capitalize on opportunities along transit routes and transit employees could use it to fill gaps in the existing routes.
“We hope you translate this important data for Americans who need to use local transportation systems to get to jobs, education, medical care, grocery stores, and other key services,” Foxx wrote.