The unstoppable expansion of Google Maps continues with news that the system’s route planner will soon include the UK’s river paths and bridges, along with canals and their locks and towpaths.
According to The Guardian, there are about 2,000 miles of canal and river paths across the nation. The project to expand Google’s mapping of these areas is being headed by the Canal and River Trust (which takes over from British Waterways and the Waterways Trust in England and Wales from July).
Ed Parsons, a geospatial technologist at Google UK, told the newspaper, “Canal towpaths offer green routes through our towns and cities, and by working with the Canal and River Trust we’re adding towpaths to Google Maps and encouraging people to discover their local waterway.”
It probably won’t make much difference to casual dog-walkers, but hikers, runners and cyclists may appreciate the addition of relatively flat, off-road pathways into Google’s route planner.
Boat users should also be able to use the system to estimate journey times, though it’s not yet clear if the planner will allow for sufficient extra time in locks.
Via The Guardian
Images © Google, British Waterways