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How Trip Planning Works Behind-the-Scenes

Our trip plans are generated by using OTP (OpenTripPlanner) and OSM (OpenStreetMap). OTP is an open-source routing server created by TriMet, the Portland Area Transit Authority, that makes use of geographic data from OSM and GTFS transit data to create a graph that is a digital representation of all the potential ways to get from Point A to Point B in a particular area.

RideAmigos partners are grouped into geographical regions and create a single OTP graph for each transit region that combines all of their OSM geography data and GTFS transit data. Our graphs are updated (as well as our transit data) and rebuilt on a nightly basis. This is done so that any changes made to by a partner to their OSM will be accurately represented the next day. We use OTP primarily for walking, biking, and transit results (but not for driving and carpooling). When we receive an API request for directions for walking, biking, or transit, the request is translated into OTP format and sent along to OTP so that the route can be retrieved.

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