Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Making a Travel Time Map (Isochrone Polygon) For your Blog

Travel Time Maps can be used for Everyday Planning 


Few things get us as excited as the thought of time travel. Where would you go, and who would you meet if you had the ability to go back in time? What if you had the ability to plan exactly where you could go based on how far you wanted to walk - today? No need to put on your mad scientist lab coat for that: you can visualize, plan and share your Travel Time Map to your blog or with friends using the Scribble Maps Pro Isochrone Tool. Let's go over what an isochrone is, and how we can use them today to discover new things in our neighbourhoods and beyond.

What is an Isochrone? 


An isochrone is a line on a diagram or map connecting points relating to the same time or equal times. Objects on a map that are connected within an isochrone line happen at the same time.

Isochrone map showing 10 minute walking distance in New York
These lines show a 10 minute walking distance from the central blue marker.

The image above shows a series of blue lines coming from a centra blue marker. The blue lines are the isochrones that show what a 10 minute travel distance looks like. The distance from Point A (the blue paddle marker) to Point B (the end of the line) all equal 10 minutes walking distance.

What's an Isochrone Polygon? 

An isochrone polygon is a polygon that uses the isochrone data to visualize a realistic travel time polygon. 

This polygon shows a 10 minute travel time distance from the central marker
This polygon shows a 10 minute travel time distance from the central marker.

Being able to visualize your data allows your audience to quickly understand what they're looking at. Scribble Maps Pro give you the tools to be able to quickly communicate complex concepts, like a Travel Time Map, at a affordable price. Let's go through the process of making a Travel Time (Isochrone) Map.

How to Use the Isochrone Tool in Scribble Maps Pro

In city planning, isochrones are typically used for measuring travel time from a static location. For example, if you wanted to see how far you could walk from any given bus stop in a city, or for planning where your next bus stop should be. In our next example, let's use the Isochrone tool (poly) in Scribble Maps Pro to create a map of bars and cafes near our hotel location on our next trip to Toronto. You can apply the lessons in this article to any scenario where you might need to visualize travel time distance. This tool is only available if you have a subscription to Scribble Maps Pro, and not found on the free version of Scribble Maps. 

1) Drop any marker onto the map. 

Using the Marker Tool drop a marker anywhere on your map. In this example, we've dropped a paddle marker on a hotel in trendy Queen Street West, in Toronto. Since we don't have a lot of time in the city, let's see how we can maximize our travel time by creating an isochrone poly.

Blue paddle marker on the Drake Hotel in Toronto inside of Scribble Maps Pro interface
Drop a marker anywhere on your map to get your Travel Time (isochrone) map ready.

2) Under Travel Time select Isochrone (poly)

In the Operations and Analysis panel select the Isochrone (Poly) option and you'll see the tool panel appear. Here, select the type of travel you wish to visualize, in our case we'll choose Walk. Select your hotel marker as your Start Marker, then select the Range Minutes you wish to walk for. We'll choose 10 minutes for our neighbourhood walk. Finally you can also choose the polygon colours, but this can be changed at any time. When you're ready, click the "Create Travel Time Isochrone" button. 

Choose your Type, Start Marker, Range Minutes, Line Color and Fill Color for your polygon.

3) Add Cafes/Bars and share your visualization 

Once you've generated your isochrone polygon you can add businesses like cafes and bars to your map using the Search Bar, to visualize exactly what's along a 10 minute walking path. 

10 minute isochrone polygon with paddle markers representing various cafes and bars. 

Once you're satisfied with your map you can Save and Share it to your friends, online on your blog or live on your Twitter account.

GIS Visualization Made Easy - Get Started Today

You don't need a degree to be able to produce interactive custom maps, or visualize GIS data in a clear and easy to read way. With Scribble Maps Pro you can get started quickly and easily without sacrificing the powerful GIS toolsets you've come to expect for your analysis and visualization. Check out the Scribble Maps Pro Demo tour today and hit Upgrade. 

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