Google Transit Data Tool for Small Transit Agencies

This project will develop a tool to enter, export and host the transit data needed to participate in Google Transit, for small transit agencies to input their transit data. While mid to large size transit agencies often have the resources to provide Google Transit data feeds in accordance with the Google Transit Feed Specification (GTFS), many small transit agencies do not have the required resources to enter, export, and host the required transit data feed or do not have their data in the required format. This tool will be made available in the form of a Web application and released under an open source software license. That will provide for the resulting tool to be open and transferable. The tool is expected to be made available in two configurations. The transit users can choose which configuration best fits their needs and circumstances:(1) hosted configuration, which minimizes the equipment requirements for the transit agency user to a personal computer with Internet access; (2) local Web application installation, by the transit agency user. This Web application could be downloaded from the project Web site. The Web application architecture will be innovative as it is platform-independent (MS Windows, Linux, or others), as well as independent of which database management system (SQL Server, MySQL, or others) is used.In this configuration option, hosting of GTFS data feeds would be provided by the transit agency. This project will include Web application implementation and transit agency user application testing.Once the software design has been verified and validated, the transit agency user application will be hosted at the contractors site. The Web application will be designed to allow transit agency participants access to the user application.The product data feed out will also be available for others to use on another organizations server.The Web application will be available to others. Web-based trip planners are used in providing passenger information, which help gain and retain transit passengers. Even though Google does not charge transit agencies for the Google Transit Web-based trip planner, there is still effort and cost for transit agencies to provide GTFS data feeds to Google. Databases required to provide GTFS data feeds are typically out of reach for many small transit agencies, due to costs, training needs, or the complexity of the solution. The project results are expected to reduce the cost and effort for providing GTFS data feeds. There are numerous small transit agencies that can benefit from such a tool.Google Transit has received dozens of requests from such agencies.Small transit agencies would benefit from the proposed hosted Web application in the form of a tool to enter, export and host the transit data needed to participate in Google Transit in a way that is commensurate with small transit agency environments. The entry requirement for an interested transit agency to use the proposed Web application will be a personal computer with Internet access. The relevant transit data will be entered and managed by the transit agency user with the Web application. In a final step, the export and hosting of the transit data in accordance with the GTFS allows Google to collect the transit data for use in Google Transit. With this package, a small transit agency would have everything to make their schedule and route information available on Google Transit, Google Maps, and Google Earth.Should other online mapping organizations decide to include transit information in their products, it would be possible for them to use the GTFS feed.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project J-04, IDEA 5

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Transit Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    Transit Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001
  • Project Managers:

    Berlin, Harvey

  • Start Date: 20090409
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • Source Data: RiP Project 21745

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01462122
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project J-04, IDEA 5
  • Files: TRB, RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 1:58PM