BBVA uses Big Data to Restructure Urban Maps

BBVA Data and Analytics is using commercial card data to redraw the maps of Madrid, Barcelona and Mexico City based on the purchasing patterns and movements of consumers as they move across the city landscape.

Card transactions of more than 413 million consumers were analyzed throughout the year to get details about the dynamics taking place in the cities. The analysis has led to the creation of new maps that redraw urban borders and identify the most touristic and residential areas or those where young people go shopping.

BBVA has worked with the data mapping firm, Carto, to develop a new tool, Urban Discovery, to view the data on an interactive display. Users can access these maps, create new tags to define new divisions and create their own personalized maps to better navigate the urban environment. The tool shows where the residents and visitors shop and also if the same customers have made consecutive purchases within a 3-hour period in an area – hexagonal cells in which the cities have been divided for this project. The tool also redraws the urban map into six zones.

Juan Murillo, head of territorial analysis at BBVA & Analytics, says: “Data science allows us to better understand the dynamics in these cities, examine how citizens are using them according to their lifestyle, and describe each area’s specialization, patterns and predominant activities.”