Va. agency, City team to develop app

Posted on March 3, 2014

The Va.-based Charlottesville Area Transit (CAT) partnered with the City of Charlottesville's IT department to release a new free mobile app so riders have a new way to obtain real-time arrival information. The app is now available to download through Google Play and Apple's App Store.

Features of the new app include:

  • Real-time data including bus stop arrival predictions for CAT buses.
  • A GPS-enabled map that automatically locates your position and displays nearby bus stops.
  • Push notifications that will instantly alert users to active detours and/or service disruptions.
  • Car-free travel directions that are customized from personal itineraries (via Google Transit).
  • A favorites menu to save frequently used bus stops.

Unlike CAT's current paper schedules, the app will automatically update its predictions based upon real road data. Much of the data the app displays originates from CAT's automatic vehicle location system. Buses "ping" their location every 15 seconds.

If unusual traffic congestion occurs, the app will reflect new predictions taking into account the delay. This feature will allow riders to reduce their wait time at bus stops, particularly useful during inclement weather, such as rain or snow.

The new mobile app will add to CAT's wide assortment of methods to obtain routing data including printed rider's guides, physical bus stop displays, online information and a direct real-time information telephone line.

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