Last week, we noticed that the long awaited and much anticipated Google Transit was up and running in the Phoenix area. Major props to the local transit agencies and the cities for working together to make this happen. The service should help a LOT of people find their way around town. Below is today’s press release from our friends at Valley Metro.
Valley Metro Introduces Google Transit in Metro Area:
Easily Find Your Transit, Bike, Walk Route Using Google Maps
Phoenix, AZ (May 24, 2010) The Phoenix area joins hundreds of cities in the U.S. who are providing transit, bicycle and walking routes with Google Maps. For those who are not regular bus or light rail passengers, and may need to find a way to work or to school, they can now go to the popular site and view their transit, walk or bike trip on a map.
"People who are familiar with Google, but not necessarily transit, will love this new tool," said David Boggs, Valley Metro executive director. "Riders don’t have to sort through timetables to plan a trip, just enter your desired trip times and Google takes care of the rest."
Google Maps features a “zoom-in” satellite view, a 3-D Earth view, and a street view of bus stops and the surrounding area for those passengers that may be unfamiliar with their destination or the area. Other features include an easy-to-read itinerary that includes transfers, trip time and distance.
To plan a walk, bike or transit trip, go to maps.google.com and click on “Get Directions.” A drop down menu provides options including public transit, walking and bicycling. The public transit link is shown each time driving directions are requested by the viewer who may not be aware that transit is even an option.
"As part of Google’s commitment to develop useful public-private partnerships, we are pleased to welcome Valley Metro to Google Transit," said Jessica Wei, Strategic Partner Development Manager at Google. "This partnership shows Valley Metro’s commitment to innovating, serving their riders and attracting new riders."
While ValleyMetro.org offers a free trip planner on its website, the planner is being upgraded with new technology and eventually will offer options different from Google’s.
“We believe that our customers will be very comfortable with this new technology,” said web developer Mike Brady. "Google is well-known for providing accurate and turn-key applications."
Valley Metro/RPTA provides eco-friendly public transit options to residents of greater Phoenix and Maricopa County, including a clean-fuel bus fleet, low-emissions light rail, a bio-diesel Dial-a-Ride fleet, online carpool matching and bus trip mapping, and bicycle and telework assistance. Funding is provided by local, state and federal revenues; and administered by a board of 16 governments working to improve and regionalize the public transit system.
Solana Del says
I had the pleasure of meeting two of the Google Earth mappers who came through San Diego. It’s amazing that they are driving every street in the United States to get those photos!