Thursday, March 05, 2009

Flight Pattern Map--How About a Commute Pattern Map?

This diagram, a visualization all the aircraft flights over the US in one day, is pretty cool.

Now image if you could analagously see the the daily travel patterns of all the people in a metro region, like the Bay Area.

The data would be harder to get. I bet cell phone providers have it, though.

It would be a huge help in planning future transit lines. Do we really know where everyone is trying to get to and from?

3 comments:

Yokota Fritz said...

I put together a bike commuters map using data from Bike To Work Day surveys in the Denver / Boulder region. I had start and end point data so I just made a map showing dots and straight lines. Lost it when I had to reclaim some storage space -- I don't have the unlimited storage resources of Google, unfortunately, and this was before my days of blogging.

Sprite said...

Have any friends in Google's maps division? Ask them if they would donate all the trips entered into Google Transit to the transit agencies.

Or... wouldn't the MTC have this info with transit.511.org?

murphstahoe said...

There is a much easier way.

Employers have their employees zipcodes in a database.

Someone at nVidia was trying to convince HR that the Caltrain shuttle should include a shuttle that meets a bullet train in Mountain View instead of only running to Lawrence. Turns out that of 2500 or so(?) employees on campus, only 90 live in San Francisco zipcodes, and only 250 live in an area where they would be served by a Southbound Caltrain to MV (basically San Mateo and San Francisco Counties).