December 19, 2011

Long Island RR launches real-time pilot

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority's (MTA) Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) launched a pilot of "LIRR Train Time," a digital service that provides real-time train arrival status to customers using mobile devices or desktop computers.

To use the service, a user enters his or her origin and destination, and Train Time will then provide upcoming departure times and indications showing whether each train is running on time or, if late, by how many minutes. Train Time also displays scheduled arrival time at the destination station, track assignments at most origin stations and a chance to click for a list of each upcoming train's intermediate stops.

Train Time uses real-time train location information provided by an enhanced state-of-the-art GPS system and from the LIRR's signal system. Its graphic interface is based on the one used by Metro-North Train Time, a similar service that launched last year.

LIRR Train Time is the latest in a series of initiatives the MTA has undertaken to increase the availability of digital service information. Other recent advances include subway countdown clocks, real-time bus tracking via MTA Bus Time, a competition to encourage app development, two major overhauls to the MTA website, digital screens that provide service status information, release of machine-readable service and performance data on the MTA's website, and more.

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