Urban Planning in Boston Is Getting the Uber Bump

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Urban Planning in Boston Is Getting the Uber Bump
Photo © Werner Kunz - Flickr
Urban Planning in Boston Is Getting the Uber Bump
Photo © Werner Kunz – Flickr

Technology that puts sensitive data into the hands of humans can be both a good thing and a dangerous thing.

Ridesharing juggernaut Uber has come under fire for misusing its tremendous quantities of customer data. But today it has announced a very real and tangible way that it is using its data for good.

Uber will release anonymized trip information to the city of Boston in the hopes that transportation authorities will be able to make more informed city planning decisions. With the data, authorities will be able to better understand traffic planning to reduce congestion as well as determine where parking is needed most, how and where the city can better time traffic lights, and where public transportation service is underrepresented.

For each Uber trip, Boston will receive the zip code zone for where the trip started and ended, the data and time for where the trip started and ended, the distance traveled in miles and how long the trip lasted in seconds. ….

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