THE PESERO MAP PROJECT - COMMUNITY-ORGANIZED TRANSPORTATION MAPPING FOR MEXICO CITY... AND THE WORLD
White and green microbuses -- commonly called "peseros" -- dominate the streets of Mexico's capital. With over 1,000 square miles of inhabitants, the city relies on a complex network of these privately-owned and operated buses to complete public transportation coverage where the subway and official bus lines don't reach.
Frustratingly, there is no reliable source of maps or routing information for the peseros.
The goal of the Pesero Map Project is to develop a reproducible, user-driven system for collecting and serving public transportation routing information.
The first phase of the project is data collection and presentation. We ride each and every pesero from end to end, recording traces on consumer GPS devices. The data is then translated into the industry standard GTFS format, and served on www.pesero.com as data and in a simple OpenLayers map. We also make a printable version of the Pesero Map, which we open-source so that any 3rd party can print them (presumably for profit).
The exciting part is what happens once the data is open and live. As has been proven in cities from Boston to Dallas to S.F., if the data is properly licensed, developer communities (again, with economic incentive) are quick to use it to make engaging web and mobile-based applications.
The last phase of the project is reproduction. We carefully document the data-collection and presentation process, assembling and packaging the software and documentation as open-source. Now with an overhead of less than $500 of equipment and some man hours (college students, volunteer groups, transport enthusiasts, etc.), communities throughout the world that rely on similar, semi-formal, transportation networks* can easily replicate the Pesero Map Project and improve their own public transit systems.
*Buenos Aires, São Paolo, Beirut, to name a few.
Erik Uzureau - Uzureau Design
Geoff Meek - Uzureau Design
Ankur Shah - Uzureau Design