Urban AnalystUA Logo

Analyse and compare cities across the world.

Urban Analyst provides interactive maps of the properties of cities including of their transport systems and socio-demographic conditions, as well as statistical summaries of all cities. Values for each city are aggregated from billions of individual routing queries, providing extraordinary insight into how people move throughout cities.

Both maps and statistics may be examined for single variables, or for pairwise combinations of variables. Lower values for all variables are always better, such as travel times or rates of unemployment. Pairwise combinations provide insight into relationships bewteen different properties of cities, such as between the various metrics of transport provision and socio-demographic inequality.

Maps ->

Interactive maps of all cities analysed to date. Most variables are displayed such the lower values reflect better conditions, such as shorter travel times or lower rates of unemployment.

Statistics ->

The statistics, or "stats", section shows average values for every UA city for each variable shown in the maps. This enables the overall values for any city to be compared with values for all other cities.

How does it work?

Values for most statistics are derived for every street intersection within each city. Travel times are measured to all other intersections using every available mode of transport, and all possible combinations of these. Full details are provided in the documentation pages. Statistics for each intersection are weighted by population densities, and aggregated within each city polygon for maps, or across entire cities for statistics.

Results for each city involve millions of public transport routing calculations, and generally billions of routing calculations through street networks. For example, results for Berlin are derived from around 170 million public transport routing calculations, and 170 billion street network routing calculations. These are calculated using Urban Analyst's own open-source software described in the documentation pages. These enormous numbers of calculations enable Urban Analyst to provide uniquely powerful insight into how people move throughout cities.

What is the best city?

There is no “best” city. Any such judgements can only be made in terms of single variables. Urban Analyst measures and compares a range of variables, and relationships between these. Each city may be better in some regards, worse in others. Urban Analyst makes differences between cities visible, and allows different cities to be compared in a variety of ways.

How can cities be added?

Urban Analyst is currently funeded by the German Government's prototype fund, including some funding for adding cities. The current recommended way is to open an issue on the GitHub repository of this site requesting the addition of a particular city.