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Transport Direct comes off the road



The government is pulling the plug on its journey-planner website Transport Direct after 10 years.

Transport Direct was set up in 2004 as one of the flagship websites in the 2005 e-government programme. In a statement today, the Department for Transport said it 'has reviewed Transport Direct and found that equivalent travel information servifes are now widely available online from several other sources'. It will close on 30 September.

The site had a turbulent start. It was announced by then deputy prime minister John Prescott in 2001, postponed several times because of chaos in the rail system and the difficulty of extracting bus timetable data from local authorities, then became notorious for finding eccentric routes and ignoring traffic congestion.

Hower the Department for Transport said today the site has served more than 160 million travel information requests, including helping spectators find their routes to the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The statement attributes the site's obsolescence to the government's open data programme, saying that "in the past few years the tovernment has worked with transport operators to make timetable data freely available to web developers. As a result, a number of journey planning websites have evolved, offering similar services to Transport Direct.


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