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Find Zip Codes Within Driving Distance Using Google Maps API

Posted on 2009-05-16
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Has anyone seen or written a script, either application layer or possible running directly inside of sql server, which uses a starting zip code and then finds all the zip codes that are a specific DRIVING DISTANCE (not great-circle or crow flys) from iit, utilizing google maps api?  

I have a client and she is not satisfied with the great-circle search we have provided for her to query all leads within a specific distance of a zip code.  Her complaint (which has validity) is that the radius distance and actual driving distances are completely different and in her case the driving distance is the most important aspect.
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Question by:davidcahan
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Chris Luttrell earned 2000 total points
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I have looked around and there does not seem to be a direct API for this but I have found a possible workaround at http://groups.google.com/group/Google-Maps-API/msg/4dc2fad4f74e3314 that I have tried on a limited basis to return the aproximate driving distance from one zip code to another.  Be careful of the limits on access though.  In the example url in this post, I just substituted zips for A and B like http://maps.google.com/maps?q=from+90210+to+90201&output=kml, if you first limited your zips to the great circle set and then checked for driving distance and were not doing this on a massive scale, you might not violate the access limit.  I tried to find what that limit is again, I have seen it before but no luck this time, but it is reasonable for most applications.
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