March 14, 2013

NYC Transit expands interactive info kiosk pilot

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) New York City Transit announced it will move ahead with the second phase of a pilot project for "On the Go!" Travel Stations, adding at least 77 of the interactive touch-screen kiosks throughout the system that offer MTA travel information and a whole lot more.

The initial pilot, launched in September 2011, has been a success. Placed at the Bowling Green, Atlantic Ave-Barclays Center and Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Ave subway stations as well as Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal, the On the Go! Travel Stations have been offering customers information about their entire trip, from planning with Trip Planner+, real-time service status, escalator and elevator status, and local neighborhood maps.

In addition, the MTA partnered with third-party developers to include applications that provide additional information, such as local history, shopping and nearby dining options. The sleek, stainless steel enclosures support a large screen with a colorful display and also provide news and weather information. The original On the Go! Travel Stations were designed by Antenna Design New York Inc. and are extremely durable and easy to clean and maintain.

“Taken together, this is an unprecedented amount of information made available to subway and commuter rail customers. These state-of-the-art customer communications kiosks provide instant information that makes using the transit system more efficient," said MTA Interim Executive Director Thomas F. Prendergast. “The positive feedback we have received via our website or Twitter account has confirmed that our customers have embraced this new technology improving their riding experience.”

The MTA will enter into license agreements with CBS Outdoor and Control Group Inc. requiring that the two licensees purchase the kiosks and deliver them to NYC Transit for installation. In this unique public/private partnership, the companies will each retain 90% of gross advertising receipts and pay 10% of the gross receipts to NYC Transit until they recoup their capital investments in the pilot. After they recover their costs, the companies will keep 35% of gross receipts and pay 65% to NYC Transit.

Title to the kiosks transfers to NYC Transit upon installation and acceptance.

As part of this proof of concept phase of the pilot, the licensees will have the creative freedom to design

The kiosks, going into an additional 16 stations, will provide NYC Transit with a Digital Out of Home Network that will allow NYC Transit to communicate with customers at the station level, especially in times of planned and unplanned events, reducing the need to plaster stations with paper signage. It is estimated that the hardware cost of each kiosk will be under $15,000. CBS Outdoor will provide 30 kiosks and Control Group will provide anywhere from 47 to 90 kiosks.

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