How to create drive time polygons

by Louisa Bainbridge
on Jan 23, 2017

Drive time maps

Creating drive time polygons (an isochrone) ‘where can I reach within 30 minutes?’ uses a whole different set of processes to distance-based mapping. Drive time maps aren’t simple circles like miles radius (find out why 'travel time radius' is impossible here). This blog explains how to plot shapes by minutes not miles – no radius in sight. To create these maps we’ve used the TravelTime search API, but you can also use your own time mapping software. If you're a developer get an API key here. If not we have a desktop app that does it free, try it below. Click

Select an origin

To create drive time polygons, one origin point may be enough. For more complicated map-based analysis, select more than one origin. Using multiple origin points creates a larger area of interest, e.g. map all areas within 15 minutes drive from point A or point B. It’s also possible to identify prime locations suitable for more than one point of origin e.g. map the area that’s within 30 minutes from point A as well as point B.


Select a time of day

Unlike distance-based mapping, drive time maps can significantly change shape depending on the time of day of the search. Selecting a time during peak rush hour will reduce the size due to congestion on the roads.


Arrival / departure time

Select which direction the travel times should be calculated. Arrival time maps display all locations that arrive at the origin point by the selected time. Departure time maps highlight locations that are reachable assuming they start driving from the origin at the selected time.


Select the travel time

Choose the maximum driving time in hours and minutes. Use multiple polygons to highlight the additional locations available if extra drive time is added. Take a look at all transport modes available of our isochrones

Send an API request

Choose the maximum driving time in hours and minutes. Use multiple shapes to highlight the additional locations available if extra drive time is added. Developers -  check our an article that creates a sample app here

The maps shown in this post use LeafletCheck out our isochrone guide page for more articles on how to create the perfect polygon.   



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