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Google Maps Gains Transit Info

In some cities and for some types of public transportation, Google Maps can show the next departure time, what lines serve a specific station, and a link to the transit agency.

Google Maps gained a new feature Monday: The transit station icons on Google Maps now present transit information when clicked.

"Depending on the data available for a given public transit system, Google Maps now shows the next departure times, what lines serve a specific station, and/or a link to the transit agency to get more detail," said Christoph Oehler, a product manager at Google, in a blog post.

Some stations show departure times; others show only links to the associated transit service.

For a limited number of cities, Google-assisted travelers can generate detailed trip plans on public transit using Google Transit Trip Planner, an experimental Google Labs service that works in conjunction with Google Maps.

Google Transit Trip Planner covers the following states, cities, and transit agencies: Burbank (Burbank Bus), Orange County (OCTA), and San Diego (MTS), Calif.; Tampa (HART), Fla.; Honolulu (TheBus); Pittsburgh (Port Authority); Duluth (Duluth Transit), Minn.; Reno (RTC RIDE), Nev.; Eugene (Lane Transit District) and Portland (TriMet), Ore.; Austin (Capital Metro), Texas; and Seattle (King County Metro).

The service also covers national rail networks, domestic airlines, and ferries in Japan.

Google depends on transit data supplied by transit agencies. It provides details about how to submit transit data at its Web site.

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