Municipalities, don’t be afraid to share information

Municipalities, don’t be afraid to share information

If you asked any Istanbul resident about their problems with the city, traffic would be the first answer you get. I am sure that along with Moscow, Istanbul will be one of the cities where driverless cars will be used the most. There is a huge demand for anything related to traffic in Istanbul. Drivers have even begun playing games, watching news and TV series and reading books just because they sit still for many minutes during rush hours. 

Lately, a number of new applications targeting this transportation problem in Istanbul have entered the market. BiTaksi and Uber help you find a vehicle. The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s (İBB) “İBB Trafik” application shows you the traffic situation on the city’s main roads. 

İspark’s application lets you find free parking spots in İspark’s 700 parking lots around the city. 

Waze is a social-based application which enables you to inform other drivers about the current situation on the roads that you are using. 

Yandex lets you to see where you should go and how crowded the traffic at your destination is. 

Başarsoft’s application was developed by the Turkish company which provides Google’s maps. 

However there is an application which stands out from the rest. 

Trafi, which was founded recently, tells you how to go from one place to another via any means possible. 

 According to TechCrunch, Lithuania startup Trafi, which offers a public transport app to help you plan journeys, has closed a $6.5-million Series A funding round led by Octopus Investments. The EBRD Venture Capital Investment Program and BaltCap also participated, along with previous investor Practica Capital.

Like competitor Moovit, which earlier this year raised a further $50 million, Trafi could be considered a “Waze for public transport.” It uses real-time data provided by users and transit authorities to provide up-to-date and as accurate as possible journey planning information.

For the time being, the app is available in Turkey, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Brazil, and the young startup says it will use the additional capital to launch in additional markets and further develop the technology and scale the team, including opening an office in London.

I am sure there will be other applications that will enter the market targeting the traffic problem in Istanbul in the coming months.

People need applications like these. People want to travel as quickly as possible without losing time. This is called efficiency. It is beneficial at the personal level and it is very necessary at the country level. If people can reach where they want in a shorter amount of time, they will be happier, more energetic and they will have more time to spend on things that really matter, which include both family and business. Applications like Trafi are trying to do so but they require instant information from municipalities. I learned the municipalities in Turkey don’t want to give instant information on traffic. 

I would like to kindly ask the municipalities to share traffic information so we as citizens can find better means of traveling within the city, which is a win for everyone.