Thursday, March 11, 2010

Transportation mega leap:

I had heard for some years that Google was considering including bicycle routes on Google Maps and now it has come to be.  To those who have not thought about transportation, except to jump into their gas-guzzler even for short distances, this added feature to Google search engine doesn’t seem like much of a news item. 

But, it is. 

Proven by many communities (check out Streetfilms: Contra-Flow Biking in Boulder) who begin to accommodate bicycle traffic, our communities become cleaner, safer and a better place to live when walking and bicycle are encouraged.  Being able to quickly route the best way from here to there will a bicycle map increases the probability that commuters and the rest of the public will consider taking that trip on a bicycle and helping our communities to be more sustainable.  Or course, much more than an online map will be required to reverse our tendency to create an environment for vehicular traffic instead of an environment where the public feels comfortable walking and bicycling to their destination, but this step by Google is a step in the sustainable direction.  

Official Google Blog: Biking directions added to Google Maps "Whenever I meet someone who finds out that I work on the directions team for Google Maps, the first question I'm asked is often "So when's Google Maps going to add biking directions?" We're big biking fans too, so we've been itching to give you a concrete answer. I don't want to keep the good news a secret any longer, so the answer is: right now! Today we've added biking directions and extensive bike trail data to Google Maps for the U.S. "

No comments: