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Pittsburgh’s Mobility Map - A Map Made with Yinz in Mind

The ultimate guide to navigating Pittsburgh through a high definition (HD) map of connected transit options.

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The Mobility Map is the ultimate guide to navigating Pittsburgh by way of providing high definition (HD) connected transit information for parking, walking, biking, scooting, rolling or any other imaginable means of getting around town. Mobility maps are made from street-level 3D data, which mean they provide superior detail about your mobility choices over conventional digital maps.

Why a Mobility Map? Navigation apps are truly amazing tools for driving, but are borderline utilitarian for anything beyond.  Go ahead, open up your favorite navigation site and route yourself to a destination across town using a non-driving option. Hold that! Before you open up that browser tab, let me first tell you a story about Bob.

Bob used his favorite navigation app to plan a walk from his office on the North Shore to the Strip District for lunch.  At a glance, the recommended route seemed a bit odd to Bob as it appeared to direct him along the middle of the street. Bob assumed the app really didn’t intend for him to walk into oncoming traffic so he instead set off along the adjacent sidewalks. What he didn’t expect, however, was the blocked sidewalks along the suggested route. Blocked due to a construction site that happened to be visible in the map data.  As much as Bob (and the rest of us) have come to depend on navigation apps, they were never designed to work with anything other than cars.

The Mobility Map solves this and many other interrelated issues. The mobility map itself is not unlike a traditional navigation app, but with a much higher level of detail. Sidewalks, curbs, crosswalks, parking spots, and transit locations are captured, located and linked into a high fidelity network of mobility options. This provides the visitor/commuter with true insight for matching their mobility needs with their destination.  After all, mobility isn’t just about getting from A to B, but rather enabling everyone with access to everything the city has to offer. 

 
Mobility Maps: Safe routes created for universal mobility.


Imagine for a moment if we all had access to a Mobility Map. The experience of traversing that first and/or last mile of a journey goes from being uncertain to empowering if not exciting. No longer beholden to siloed modes that focus solely on a bus, bike, scooter or car, the Mobility Map offers interoperability to connect the transition points of your trip according to your needs and constraints. Furthermore, it does all this with the real physical world in mind because a route is only as useful as roads, paths and sidewalks allow. 

Benefits of the Mobility Map do not end with commuters. Infrastructure owners, city planners, transit authorities and many others will have a view of their assets unlike anything previously available. We could have a world where infrastructure maintenance budgets are developed more accurately, issues are fixed in a more timely manner, infrastructure designs are tuned to match accurate real world conditions, and social equity is better supplied across the city. All of this made possible with better, up-to-date information on local mobility infrastructure. 

Is this possible? Absolutely.  Much of what is needed to make these maps can be acquired from 3D data and the Allvision team are experts in sourcing and processing it.  With backgrounds in robotics, 3D, AI, GIS and CAD, we use the freshest 3D data and magic elves (more like proprietary algorithms, but you really can’t tell the difference) to create amazingly accurate maps of roads and sidewalks.

Example of 3D data (source Kaarta)

So…

Are you in a wheelchair or need to push a stroller on the sidewalk?

Do you know where to go once you have been dropped off or park?

Do we want to encourage more walking, biking and bussing?

Where would you get a digital map of mobility infrastructure to facilitate the design of new, more creative and exciting transit options? 

Then why not then try a Mobility Map because while it is hard to say what the City of Tomorrow will look like, it isn’t hard to envision a world full of diverse interconnected mobility alternatives. Seeing as there is already a gamut of options (driving, walking, biking, scooting, rideshare, buses and rail just to name a few), it is clear there exists no single method to solve all needs. As these options increase, as cities grow prosperous, and as more commuters and visitors pack the roads and sidewalks, guidance on the connectivity between mobility methods and information on infrastructure is essential to making it all work.  






Describe who will use your solution (1,000 characters)

Users will fall into two camps: those looking to get around town and those responsible for maintaining mobility infrastructure. For those looking for mobility options, the Mobility Map would be great to consult prior to a trip, much in the same way you consult weather sites and navigation apps before leaving the house in the morning. For those who design and maintain city infrastructure, the map will allow real-world context for layout and planning.

Describe your solution's stage of development

  • Prototype - you have built a prototype and tested it with potential users
  • Pilot - you have implemented your solution in a real-world scenario

Tell us about your team or organization (500 characters)

Allvision is a Pittsburgh-based startup company composed of 3D data experts who love solving hard problems. We believe our technology can enhance Pittsburgh's vision of mobility for all. We have backgrounds in robotics, design software and GIS with proven track records in startups. We come from CMU, startups and the world’s leading design software companies. More importantly, we are Pittsburghers who just want better ways to get around town. To learn more about us, visit www.allvision.io

Size of your team or organization

  • 2-10

Funding Request

  • $100,000

Describe how you would pilot your idea (1000 characters)

Piloting requires a supplier of 3D, creation of the Mobility Map, development of the mobile app interface and working alongside stakeholders (the City of Pittsburgh, transit authorities, app developers, and users) to test, validate and roll into production. We have already have data collection partners to supply the 3D data. We will need time to process the map and develop the app. Time to completion will vary depending upon geographical size of the map as defined with the stakeholders, but generally speaking, rollout to get to a point of user testing should be a matter of months from kickoff.

Describe how you would measure the success of your pilot (1000 characters)

Key performance indicators would be the total number of users and their frequency of use. Statistics on route satisfaction would be requirement as would feedback for understanding overall utility. Over the course of the pilot, we would work in collaboration with stakeholders to assess the overall impact to all classes of user.

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Photo of KatieWalsh 100
Team

Many thanks Aaron and thanks for adding your inspiration post too. You won't be able to update your post after 4pm, so you have a few minutes to make any changes if you need to - looks good to me though - Katie - Facilitator