Using Google Cloud to Store and Analyze Waze for Cities Data

Why should I use Google Cloud to store and analyze Waze for Cities data?

Google Cloud gives you the ability to explore and visualize Waze data without the hassle of building your own data intake and storage system from scratch. Using the Cloud, you can:

  • Access over a year of free Waze traffic records for your region

  • Make smarter traffic and infrastructure decisions with built-in analysis tools

  • Integrate Waze-exclusive data into other popular data management platforms

  • Share community improvement ideas internally and externally with visual templates

Is it complicated to set up and use?

Long story short, no way! Google Cloud connects with your existing Waze for Cities account, so setting up the integration requires just a few simple steps. Preconfigured dashboards help you monitor the basics. From there, you have the option to customize and link other datasets depending on your needs.

How do I access Google Cloud data?

To connect to Google Cloud, click on the “Access Waze Data via Google Cloud” tab from the Partner Hub homepage. You’ll need a Google account to access the Cloud integration. If your Hub account is not a Google linked address, you can set up a Google account with the same email address you're using to access the Waze Partner Hub.

Follow the links for Data Studio, BigQuery, and BigQuery Geoviz, and you are on your way to exploring the historic Waze data about your community.

To grant access to an additional colleague, add their contact information into one of the subsections of the tab and allow three to four hours for permissions settings to take effect.

Overview: Cloud Resources for Waze for Cities Partners

Key Alerts Dashboard

Preconfigured overviews of local traffic activity, sourced from free Waze data and built with free Google Cloud tools

BigQuery

A Google Cloud tool for interactive analysis of large datasets

Data Studio

A Google Cloud tool for custom and templated visuals and reports

Platform Integration

A handy list of external data platforms that can be used with Google Cloud tools

Key Alerts Dashboard

The Waze for Cities Google Cloud Integration gives you access to several datasets. The Key Alerts Dashboard is a free, easy way to put these datasets to use.

The dashboard gives you a snapshot of frequently used Waze for Cities data and insights for the polygon (region) you created in the Partner Hub. This includes Traffic Alerts, Accidents, and Irregularities. Overall, the dashboard helps you understand traffic and transportation trends in your polygon, and gives you a sense of what you can do with the Cloud tools.

To access the dashboards for the first time, you need to authorize the Data Studio Community Connector, a free tool that enables Waze to verify which data should be provided to you.

Traffic Alerts

This page gives an overview of your alerts, and a feed of individual alerts reported in your area over a selected period of time. Use the drop-down menus to sort by alert type and subtype.

Traffic Accidents

This page gives an overview of accident types and accidents per road type, as well as a feed of individual accidents reported in your area over a selected period of time.

Traffic Irregularities

This page gives an overview of traffic irregularities that are automatically generated by the Waze system using GPS data, calculations of actual speed versus historical average and free-flow speed, and user-generated reports shared by Wazers on the road.

You can also access a feed of individual traffic irregularities reported in your area over a selected period of time.

BigQuery

BigQuery is a data tool that enables you to dive deeper with custom interactive analysis of large datasets with SQL and layering of Waze data with other datasets. Conduct up to 1 TB of queries and store up to 10 GB of your custom data & analyzes for free, with the option to upgrade for a small fee. More on pricing here.

To query your datasets, combine the dataset name with one of three Waze table names. For more detailed instructions, see the BigQuery Onboarding Guide linked below.

More help

In the “Access Waze Data via Google Cloud” tool box in Hub, you’ll find a number of BigQuery resources:

Account set-up

To access BigQuery, click the link in the "Analyze data with Google Cloud" within the Toolbox tab of the Hub. Then, create and name your first project. If your organization is already a G Suite user, you may need to follow these instructions to make sure you have the right permissions:

  1. Find your G Suite Admin: click here for help

  2. Have your admin create a GCP Project and grant you “Project Editor” permissions

If you’re prompted to enable the BigQuery API for your project, you can do so via the Google Cloud Console. Once your account is set up, check the BigQuery onboarding guide for a set of sample queries to help you get started.

Information sharing

BigQuery makes it easier than ever for our partners to share queries, analyzes, and interesting ideas for improving community roadways. Until now, partners used a wide range of tools that weren’t compatible with each other. BigQuery works with a variety of geography SQL functions, and built-in APIs allow you to access BigQuery data from other applications like Tableau and Google Sheets.

The Waze team is exploring how to best share findings between partners, and we’d love any feedback you can share as you familiarize yourself with the tools.

 

Data Studio

Google’s Data Studio is a live analytics and dashboard tool used to create interactive analyzes and performance insights. Data Studio helps you create visuals of your Waze for Cities data. You can use Waze report templates or build custom reports to share within your organization. Tools like this are ideal for showing trends to city leadership or getting a quick daily snapshot of traffic in your city.

You can also use Data Studio to integrate other data sources and show the relationships between Waze data and other data sets (e.g. air quality, weather events, crashes, etc.).

For more information on getting started with Data Studio, click here.

 

Platform Integration

If you’re already using another platform for loading, transforming, and visualizing data, you may be able to integrate it with your Waze for Cities Google Cloud tools. Here is a small sampling of platforms that integrate with Google Cloud:

Data integration

BI and data visualization

Additional Resources

If you’d like the download a PDF version of this guide, please click here

Follow the links below for additional resources and support, or contact us through this form for more help.

This resource was developed for Waze for Cities partners. To find additional educational materials, log in to your Waze for Cities account and look under the Resources section.

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