Kisio, Google Maps, and MobilityData have published new open data sets and a handbook to illustrate how stations look on the inside and improve route planner applications for passengers.
The aim of this new venture is to present transit station data as open data and restore adapted routes for people with reduced mobility.
Kisio and MobilityData revealed “Go Deeper Paris”, their partnership with Google Maps, during Autonomy, an international sustainable mobility solutions trade fair at the Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris, from October 16 – 17 2019.
Mobility services pioneer, Kisio, spoke about the project during a “Data and Connectivity” round table on October 17, 2019 at 10:25am on Stage 2 – Industry Talks.
Improving passenger experience with new data
How can I take a metro ride when I can’t go up more than seven steps at a time? Which entrance should I take when I have a stroller? How do I know which way to go in a big station I don’t know well? These situations are frequently encountered by passengers. New information had to be gathered to enable route search engines to guide passengers more precisely and improve their travel experience. Once accessibility data has been processed through an algorithm, routes can be calculated more precisely, especially routes inside stations.
And that is why, Kisio, a mobility pioneer which meets new digital technology and regional data challenges, joined forces with Google Maps in the “Go Deeper Paris” project to improve the travel experience for passengers with reduced mobility.
During the “Go Deeper Paris” project, MobilityData gathered the different actors together, including Google and Kisio, to streamline, finalize and officially adopt the new format.
GTFS-Pathways: a new data standard
The GTFS (General Transit Feed Specification) data standard created in 2006 by Google is used by most of the world’s route planner applications. However, current transit data formats do not take a range of criteria into account, such as actual travel time, level of accessibility, platform location, and if there is an escalator, etc.
In 2019, Kisio and Google Maps ran a pilot test in two Paris metro stations (Saint Lazare/Haussman and Réaumur-Sébastopol) to digitally illustrate the inside of transit stations and restore usable data.
MobilityData, the new GTFS-Pathways format creator, was also involved in the project to promote the extended data format.
The result of the new standard will improve mobility for eco-responsible passengers through access to consolidated, seamless and reliable information for all travel platforms.
Four main features were tested in the pilot project:
Types of uses available with GTFS-Pathways data.
Especially for people with reduced mobility (physical disability or visual impairment, luggage, strollers, problems negotiating steps, stress, foreign language, etc.).
The level of accuracy needed to illustrate in-station routes.
How to integrate signage for connections, entrances and exits in the digital format.
How to gather quality data with the least possible use of resources.
Concrete results were achieved during the pilot phase:
A free-access GTFS-Pathways handbook
A GTFS Ile-de-France data set dated May 2019, which includes accessibility data for Réaumur Sébastopol and Saint-Lazare / Haussmann stations, available online.
Flower: a dedicated application to industrialize data collection.
David O’Neill, Kisio Analysis & Consulting Executive Director:
“The Go Deeper Paris project is a major step forward in improving user experience for all search engines. The application provides tools to enable all Public Transport Authorities to collect valuable data, especially for passengers who need extra help. Publishing data files in open data format should accelerate innovation and its integration in search engines. We hope this progress will help to accelerate the collection of this type of data in many cities.”
Léo Frachet, MobilityData CEO:
“Go Deeper Paris is the perfect example of successful collaboration for high quality data collection and use for which both actors – Kisio and Google – brought their own reflections on user needs. MobilityData provides an overview for a specific project, just like Go Deeper Paris, that goes beyond the specific needs of Public Transport Authorities, service providers and passenger information applications, to implement a data format, GTFS-Pathways for this project, that will be used internationally.”
Kisio, Paris council, and Transilien (SNCF group) presented Go Deeper Paris at the Autonomy trade fare on October 16 and 17, 2019 in Paris, and spoke at the round table on “New mobility data: challenges, governance, benefits”, under the theme “Data and Connectivity” on Thursday October 17 at 10:25 am on Stage 2 – Industry Talks. The presentation included a call to test the data set algorithms, which are available from the MobilityData GitHub, to consolidate the collected data.
Kisio presented some Navitia.io applications, a GTFS and open-source data platform created and run by Kisio, during a meet-up organized by Kisio’s digital teams on October 30 at Liberté Living, 9, rue d’Alexandrie, 75002 Paris.
Read the GTFS Ile-de-France data set dated May 2019, which includes accessibility data for Réaumur Sébastopol and Saint-Lazare / Haussmann stations.