ISI Foundation presents CityChrone, a Public Transport Isochrone Map

How much time does it take to cross a city by public transport? This is a question millions of commuters must face every morning, while going at work, and whose answer may be delivered in the future with the help of new quantitative techno-social studies. Indeed, urban mobility is a field where recent developments in open source software and open data can play a strong role in optimizing citizens' needs. As the CityChrone – Public Transport Isochrone Map positively shows.

The isochrone is a set of points that can be reached in an interval of time from a starting point. Developed by ISI Researchers Indaco Biazzo and Francesca Tria and by ISI Research Leader Vittorio Loreto, as part of the Elise Project, CityChrone considers the isochrones generated by public transport displacements in four big European cities (Rome, Milan and Turin in Italy, Paris in France). When online users pick a starting point, the system computes a new map, showing chromatically-varied urban areas that can be reached in different intervals of time by public transport.

The map is built processing public data made available by local transport agencies and open source crowdsourced tools like OpenStreetMap and OpenTripPlanner. Computations are based on the timetable of a workday morning and first results show how public transport isochrones are strongly influenced by the presence of subway or urban railway lines (especially in Turin and Rome, while in Paris isochrone contours are more complex, thanks to the higher number of subway lines).

New features will be added in the following weeks, like the chance to guess how well a given point is connected and to compare own guesses with computed values and with the average perception of other users. This will help researchers to work on an extensively studied by yet unsolved dilemma: how are people's feelings related to reality. Besides, users can already give a vote to air quality, public transport services and life quality of the chosen location.

CityChrone:  More info (SocialDynamicsLab blog):