October 15, 2012

Baylor app to track after-hours shuttle

Photo credit: Baylor Marketing & Communications/Matthew Minard

Photo credit: Baylor Marketing & Communications/Matthew Minard
Students who ride the After Hours Baylor University Shuttle (BUS) can now use their smart phones to track the real-time location of the shuttle as it travels through the Waco, Texas-based Baylor campus during nighttime hours.

Students can view live GPS data of the location of the After Hours shuttle by downloading the free Ride Systems app for both iPhone and Droid at www.baylorshuttle.com. The system provides the location of the shuttle updated every 10 seconds.

The BUS is a fixed-route transportation system operated by Waco Transit in cooperation with Baylor's department of parking and transportation services. The university's After Hours route, which runs from 6:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Monday through Thursday,  provided an opportunity for both Baylor and Waco Transit to test the GPS system.

"The new technology is a potential 'game changer' for the BUS service, as it answers the question, 'Where's the BUS?'" said Matt Penney, director of parking and transportation services at Baylor. "It provides a new level of comfort, predictability and control for potential riders, and we are pleased to be able to offer this technology to our students."

Several mass transit systems, including those at hospitals, university campuses and cities throughout the United States, have added GPS tracking to their vehicles in recent years, Penney said, which has resulted in increased ridership of their systems.

"The After Hours BUS at Baylor currently averages around 80 passengers per night," he said. "We expect that number to increase as more students become aware of the service and know that they can find the exact location of the shuttle simply by downloading the real-time tracking app."

Ride Systems currently supports similar GPS tracking systems for several health care and university campuses, including Baylor Medical Center and Oklahoma State University.


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