When it comes to transit data the first thing everyone wants is well… a simple transit map.
Today I’ll be talking what makes it so hard to create a public transit map and what I am hoping to address with this new project to make it easier to communicate with riders and staff.
Why does GTFS not work for the web?
When it comes to transit GTFS has been always been the standard for transit schedules since Google maps was a thing. While it makes sense for showing off you schedule and alignment it leaves something to be desired when going to show off your work on the web.
A couple months ago I put out our GTFS to Geojson tool that showcased how to display visualize transit data geographically. I even made some updates recently to make it more performant and have published the code for others to use.
But how can I SEE the routes
With the wind at my sails I have kept chugging along and out of the blue someone contacted me about working on some maps that would visualize GTFS for an agency in Nebraska.
Using tools that I have already highlighted I was able to make some quick updates what I think is a success.
Using the specification I was able to gain access to the agency route colors from the routes.txt files and by transforming the data from CSV I’ve been able to list them in a panel for easy zooming and filtering.
Ok, but what about schedule updates?
I’m glad you asked. Simple transit map updates weekly at 2am on Monday morning as Monday is the day most schedules change.
This will allow simple transit map to run updates for you in the background and host on your site as long as you are watching for changes on Github.
How much is Simple Transit Map
Right now it’s free and that won’t change. All of the code is open to the public and there are directions on how to connect your GTFS.
What if I want to make changes for my agency?
First off, thanks for being interested. I’d love to talk about how we can work together to make something custom for your agency. Feel free to drop me a line through our contact page on how we can make this work for you.