The Travel Time Matrix 2018 for the Helsinki metropolitan area is out!

Digital Geography Lab has published the 2018 version of the Helsinki Region Travel Time Matrix. The matrix contains travel times and distances between all 250 meter grid squares in the capital region of Finland, with public transportation, car, bike and walking, at different times of the day.

The previous versions of the matrix have been published in 2013 and 2015, allowing analyses of travel time changes due to big infrastructure projects in the region. Biking is included in the matrix for the first time. The data is available openly, alongside with the tools that were used to produce it.

Comparisons between different travel modes and years reveal interesting patterns in the accessibility of the Helsinki region. The most accessible grid squares have moved northwards from the city center. Still, the central area of the city is the best reachable by public transportation, while the ring roads in the outskirts of the city are well-reachable by the car-driving population. Biking is a competitive mode of transportation and beats other modes of transport in distances shorter than 5 km, a bit depending on the place and naturally the speed of the biker. The Travel Time Matrix provides biking travel times for fast and slow bikers. The speeds have been estimated based on Strava sports application, as well as city bike system of Helsinki.

The big infrastructure changes like the opening of a new metroline (Länsimetro) has had moderate impact on the accessibility of the region. The travel times have become shorter on average in Lauttasaari and Otaniemi, and longer in parts of Espoo.

Download the data from here.

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New article out: Health research needs more comprehensive accessibility measures

In our new article “Health research needs more comprehensive accessibility measures: integrating time and transport modes from open data” we discuss and demonstrate why and how both temporality and multimodality should be integrated in health related studies that include accessibility perspective. We provide evidence regarding the importance of using multimodal spatio-temporal accessibility measures when conducting research in urban contexts. In our case, we study the healthy food accessibility in Helsinki metropolitan area.

Our results show that both time and mode of transport have a prominent impact on the outcome of the analyses; thus, understanding the realities of accessibility in a city may be very different according to the setting of the analysis used. Neglecting time and (multiple) transport modes from spatial analyses may lead to overly simplified or even erroneous images of the realities of accessibility. Hence, there is a risk that health related planning and decisions based on simplistic accessibility measures might cause unwanted outcomes in terms of inequality among different groups of people.

Article is open access and it was published in International Journal of Health Geographics. Read the full article here:

New paper out: Accessibility of urban aquatic environments using PPGIS method

In our new joint article with Aalto University (Department of Real Estate, Planning and Geoinformatics) we examine access to aquatic environments from the environmental justice perspective. Participation GIS (PPGIS) method was used to provide multifaceted knowledge on the person-based accessibility patterns related to aquatic environments. Our accessibility tools were used to model the accessibility to water areas with different travel modes.

Article was published in Landscape and Urban Planning. Read the full article here:
Comparing conventional and PPGIS approaches in measuring equality of access to urban aquatic environments

New publication in Terra!

Our article “Joukkoliikenteellä, autolla ja kävellen: Avoin saavutettavuusaineisto pääkaupunkiseudulla” (‘By public transportation, private car and walking: Open accessibility data set of Helsinki Region’) was published in Terra.

Our article also introduces a new article format ‘Data descriptions’ that is a publication for descriptions of scientifically valuable datasets that aims at helping the researchers to publish, discover and reuse research data thus promoting open science.

Two new publications: tools for accessibility calculations in Helsinki Region and in Peruvian Amazonia

We have two new publications available from our Publications page.

First one introduces methods (i.e. MetropAccess-Reititin tool) to calculate travel times in Helsinki Region based on public transportion schedules.

The second one introduces methods and tools to analyze travel times and speeds in Peruvian Amazonia based on our pilot Amazonia Riverboat Observation System (AROS) and Trajectory Reconstruction and Analysis Tool (TRAT) that is designed to analyse and extract information from AROS GPS-data.

Two presentations in OGRS 2014 conference

We had two presentations from our group in OGRS 2014 conference dedicated to exchanging ideas on and results from development and use of open source geospatial software in both research and education.

Juha Järvi had a presentation about the MetropAccess-Reititin (i.e. Router) which is a tool designed to analyze travel times and accessibility in urban areas based on public transportation schedules.

Henrikki Tenkanen had a presentation about our accessibility research in Peruvian Amazonia. He told about the pilot observation system (AROS) that we have developed for tracking the local riverboats navigating along the Amazonian rivers and about the open source analysis tool (TRAT) that is developed to analyze the data from the observation system.