Google transit

January 8, 2006 at 11:09 pm (Planning, Portland)

Coming soon to a city near you.

Most transit agencies (even SEPTA!) have something like this on their web site, so you have to wonder how this will be useful to people. The unique feature is that google transit calculates the cost difference between taking transit and driving. It is based on the standard formula of $0.40/mile driving, which is a very general estimate. One day, I imagine, this service will include real-time traffic data, so that the comparison will be accurate; i.e., how much time/money will it cost me right now vs. taking the bus/train? I know that those services exist on your local traffic reoprt, so integration can’t be that far off. It could even factor in the average local cost for a gallon of gas. THAT would be a site worth checking out. Until that happens, this is a pretty useless service….of course transit is cheaper, when your operating costs are 85-95% subsidized it damn well better be.

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