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You Pilot. We Navigate. Part 2.

Point-to-Point Travel Times at 35th Ave SW & SW Snoqualmie St (click picture for larger image)

When you went to work this morning, so did our Dynamic Message Signs (DMS).  As previously reported, SDOT is now providing accurate point-to-point travel times during the AM and PM commutes via DMS.  This information allows drivers to make better decisions en route to their destination and, as a result, improves commute times and reduces pollution. 

Travel times for an expanded number of corridors are now available on our new and improved Travelers Information Map (TIM) which allows commuters to reference point-to-point drive times before leaving home.  TIM is loaded with useful tools like construction alerts, details about planned events, traffic incident reports, traffic flow, and access to an array of traffic cameras.  Check out TIM for up-to-the-minute travel times on the following corridors: 15th Ave NW, Elliott/15th Ave W, Denny Way, 1st Ave S, 4th Ave S, E Marginal Way, West Seattle, and Aurora Ave (available in early 2011). 

Screen Shot of Monday Morning Traffic Conditions (click for larger image)

TIM was originally designed for use on a desktop device.  With the increasing popularity of hand held smart devices (particularly the iPhone) it quickly became clear that an interface optimized for hand held devices was necessary.

The primary concerns regarding hand held devices are reduced data bandwidth and reduced screen size.  To address bandwidth, the hand held version of TIM will reduce the amount of data by presenting users with choices of available information rather than providing all information at once.  For example, when selecting a camera icon representing multiple camera images, the user will be presented with a text list of available images to choose from.  To address the reduced screen size, users will initially be presented with a map showing only traffic congestion levels and will have to request the other information that is normally present on the map such as incident report, camera image, and travel time icons.

Other handheld interface issues will also be addressed such as providing scroll wheels in place of traditional drop down menus.

It's TIM on your Smart Phone! (click for larger image)

These new tools promise to benefit just about everyone by reducing drive times, making bus trips quicker, and improving air quality for walkers and bikers.