Friday , 3 April 2020

Datasets on transportation by Telengana Government

While providing solutions for urban mobility, the Telangana government has released datasets pertaining to public transport in the State. The move is in line with the State’s Open Data Policy of 2016. The data was released on a portal in General Transit Feed Specification (GTFS), a widely accepted format used for public transportation. The format allows public transport agencies to publish their data and permits companies or developers to develop apps by using the data. The datasets are available for users to download.

Speaking to TrafficInfratech, Padma Sundari, Deputy Secretary, Electronics & Communications Department, Government of Telangana said, “We have been working for around six to eight months on this. Using open data, an integrated transport planner can be developed.”

She further added, “What you are seeing now is government data. We are now going to crowdsource data, without compromising on its quality. This move provides an opportunity to develop applications for various segments of people like differently abled, the elderly, students, employees, etc., according to their wants and requirements. It will also bring in more transparency to the commuters, using technology to change/update the schedules in a very easy way.”

The Transit data will provide the most reliable information sourced from the respective agencies and applications connecting all kinds of Transport Systems to seamless and optimized transport in the city. Utilising the global standards for transit data has made it easier for the technology enthusiasts to develop solutions and emulate the same across the world for many scenarios through which the public will be benefitted enormously. Across the globe, transit information is being shared in the Open Domain by using GTFS file formats developed by Google.

“While the datasets of both HMRL and MMTS are already available in GTFS format, which is the globally accepted standard for such data, work on the mammoth database of the RTC will be completed in a few weeks,” informed Rakesh Dubbudu, Founder, Factly.

Factly and the World Resources Institute have been helping the Telangana government’s Open Data Unit in making these datasets open in GTFS formats over the last six to eight months. The Telangana government’s idea is to open transit data from TSRTC, HMRL and MMTS to provide a platform for innovators, start-ups, researchers and citizens to access the information to create web/mobile applications which can help commuters travel in a more comfortable and intelligent way. Realtime data, which can be added to the GTFS data to make the transit data even more dynamic, is not yet on the Open Data unit’s agenda, but has not been ruled out in the future.

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