December 13, 2012

NJ Transit pilots real-time bus info

NJ Transit launched MyBus Now, the agency’s first real-time service information system for bus customers, as a pilot program on 16 Mercer County-area bus routes.

“The launch of the MyBus Now pilot program marks an important step toward system-wide implementation of this vital customer information tool,” said NJ Transit Executive Director James Weinstein. “With access to real-time bus location and arrival information literally at their fingertips, bus customers will be able to make informed decisions about their travel, even while on the go.”

MyBus Now will use “smart bus” technology to provide customers with access to real-time bus arrival estimates to a specific bus stop within a 30-minute window. Customers will be able to access the information in three ways: from a desktop computer through njtransit.com, a Web-enabled smartphone through the mobile version of the website and via SMS-text messaging directly to their cell phones.

Customers of the routes that operate out of NJ Transit’s Hamilton Garage will now be able to use MyBus Now to access real-time service information.

NJ Transit selected Hamilton Garage for the pilot program because the relatively small size of its operations and the fact that none of its bus routes intersect with other garages provide an ideal testing environment. The pilot will enable NJ Transit to address any issues with the system prior to a full system-wide rollout in spring 2013.

The agency is currently taking delivery of 1,145 new buses that are already equipped with smart bus technology provided by Clever Devices Ltd.  In addition, NJ Transit procured additional smart bus platforms to retrofit the remaining buses in the agency’s fleet, including those on routes operated by private carriers under contract to NJ Transit.

The Clever Devices platform offers many operational and customer benefits, including automatic bus stop announcements, vehicle condition monitoring, passenger counting and real-time location reporting. The data provided through this technology will allow for greater efficiency in terms of scheduling, planning and maintenance of the NJ Transit bus network.

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