Assess what users want when developing a traffic information Web site.
The experience of several of the nation’s top traffic and transit information Web site developers.
Louisville,Kentucky,United States; Georgia,United States; Virginia,United States; Houston,Texas,United States; Denver,Colorado,United States
- Check out other existing Web sites: TRIMARC (http://www.trimarc.org/) provides travelers with information for the interstate highway system within the greater Louisville/Southern Indiana urbanized area. The developers of this site accessed other good traveler information sites for ideas to ensure ease of use, and consequently designed the site with the ability to click on signs or cameras to get more detailed information.
- Conduct surveys: Surveys allow developers to find out what potential users want before developing a site or updating an existing one. The Georgia Department of Transportation seeks input from the public by surveying users about what features they use, how often and when, and whether they use the information to alter the route or mode of transportation they take.
- Perform usability testing: The Virginia Department of Transportation performed usability testing after their site was developed to ensure that their Web site worked and the commuters received the information that they expected.
- Obtain feedback: Developers of the best traveler information Web sites mentioned receiving user feedback and using their comments to address technical issues or update the information provided. Houston TranStar looks for continuous improvement, reviewing the site on a monthly basis and implementing new features every two or three months. Others, such as the Denver Regional Transportation District (RTD), have developed beta-test groups of Web site users who try out new features and comment on redesigns.
- Obtain feedback through 511 systems: Transit agencies frequently work with their call center customer service staff to identify questions that people ask, and consequently provide that information on the Web site. Although this direct information is not available with a fully automated telephone system, statistics on usage and intercept surveys could provide similar information.
Best Practices for Traveler Information Websites: Lessons Learned From Top Traffic and Transit Website Winners
Author: Economic and Industry Analysis Division John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center United States Department of Transportation
Published By: Office of Operations Federal Highway Administration U.S. Department of Transportation
Source Date: 6/1/2006
Average User Rating
Major Initiatives > Mobility Services for All Americans
Major Initiatives > Integrated Corridor Management Systems
Major Initiatives > Nationwide Surface Transportation Weather Observing and Forecasting System - Clarus
Major Initiatives > Emergency Transportation Operations
Other Program Activities > Real Time Traveler Information
Other Program Activities > Rural ITS Deployment