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NICE buses to add arrival tracking system

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Just happened to be posted yesterday by Newsday:

 

LINK: http://www.newsday.com/long-island/towns/nice-buses-to-add-arrival-tracking-system-1.4312097

 

image.JPG

 

Nassau's bus operator is looking to install new technology on its vehicles that could allow customers to know exactly when their bus will arrive.

 

Veolia Transportation, which operates the Nassau Inter-County Express (NICE), recently issued a request for proposals for a vendor to design, provide and install a new "intelligent/integrated transportation system" for the fleet of NICE and Able-Ride vehicles.

 

The system would allow NICE "to initiate a range of new features for passengers," Veolia spokesman Andrew Kraus said, while providing "real-time information to analyze and improve efficiency and performance."

 

The state-of-the-art technology, consisting of five components working together on each bus, would allow for real-time vehicle location and monitoring. Such a feature could let customers know, through a mobile application and electronic message boards at some bus stations, exactly how far away their next bus is and when it will arrive.

 

The system also would provide onboard electronic signs with route and schedule information, improved announcements and estimated arrival times.

 

Veolia also would use the system to gather information to improve service, including automatic passenger counts and mechanical performance. It would allow NICE to use an "air traffic control" approach with dispatchers able to track every vehicle in real time.

 

Kraus said bids are due by the end of January and a vendor will be chosen by June. The system is expected to be operational by late 2014.

 

The multimillion-dollar system would be funded through grants from the Federal Transit Administration, Kraus said.

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Would be nice...I had to wait 45 minutes for an n24 to Jamaica from Roosevelt Field, got to Roosevelt Field from the N35 @ 8:30PM and the 8:45 was a no-show and I got the 9:15.....not cool. What makes it worse is that the 8:45 SHOWED UP at 9:15...whereas the 9:15 is an N22A interline....

Edited by Cait Sith
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Yeah, it would help to have GPS systems. But it would also help if NICE had an open API and developers could make apps for the iPhone and Android which hasn't been done yet.

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This will be nice especially for infrequent routes. But I certainly don't see the need for improvements on the current automated announcements.

Edited by N4 Via Merrick Rd

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Would developers bother with NICE aps?

 

Well I have noticed many riders using smartphones on NICE, so if a successful app could be created using the NICE schedules and/or the live GPS information, the developers could make a substantial amount of money by charging just a dollar. However, its all up to NICE to release an API and allow that information to be used, otherwise developers have to manually copy all the schedule info into an app and rely on that. Problem is all buses aren't on time.

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I wonder how this system is going to be, it would be great to know when the next bus is actually coming, or being able to see a map with the actual location of the bus like MTA's bustime, but it wouldn't be helpful at times when the bus is full and you'd get flagged. 

 

Since the system will have passenger count information perhaps the system, or the Bus Operator can press a button when the bus is full, and so the bus icon can be red, or have "full" over it on the map.

 

Maybe they can have a deal with MTA so that riders can check for connecting/alternative buses in Queens,etc.

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It would be great if Veolia also brought this system to Veolia Netherlands and then to the other bus companies. I've been dying to have a bus tracking system here.

 

But I do wonder about the progress on NICE too. Maybe Brett can enlighten us?

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Well I have noticed many riders using smartphones on NICE, so if a successful app could be created using the NICE schedules and/or the live GPS information, the developers could make a substantial amount of money by charging just a dollar. However, its all up to NICE to release an API and allow that information to be used, otherwise developers have to manually copy all the schedule info into an app and rely on that. Problem is all buses aren't on time.

Prepares for ridership surge in 3....2.....1

Would be nice...I had to wait 45 minutes for an n24 to Jamaica from Roosevelt Field, got to Roosevelt Field from the N35 @ 8:30PM and the 8:45 was a no-show and I got the 9:15.....not cool. What makes it worse is that the 8:45 SHOWED UP at 9:15...whereas the 9:15 is an N22A interline....

I have noticed that all these reliability problems with NICE have happened mostly with the N2x routes have you noticed that as well? It mostly happens to the N22,20,24&27/23 Yet otherwise not so much. I guess since I barely use the N20s routes I don't get burned by unreliable service.

Edited by qjtransitmaster

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Prepares for ridership surge in 3....2.....1

 

I have noticed that all these reliability problems with NICE have happened mostly with the N2x routes have you noticed that as well? It mostly happens to the N22,20,24&27/23 Yet otherwise not so much. I guess since I barely use the N20s routes I don't get burned by unreliable service.

 

Did you really have to quote a post of mine from 2012?!

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I have noticed that all these reliability problems with NICE have happened mostly with the N2x routes have you noticed that as well? It mostly happens to the N22,20,24&27/23 Yet otherwise not so much. I guess since I barely use the N20s routes I don't get burned by unreliable service.

 

It's due to a combination of length, mid-route deviations, and capacity. The N6 might run late and bunch, but at least it's frequent.

 

Not sure how the 23/27 performed before the outer point timed connection that screws with OTP was put in place.

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That photo was taken at the beginning of 2012, back when NICE first went into service, right before the (MTA) took their run boxes back. They're all gone now.

Does NICE have a GPS tracking system of their buses so they know where they are?

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Does NICE have a GPS tracking system of their buses so they know where they are?

 

I don't know about recent developments (NICE and the 1840's) but LI Bus had GPS on all their buses for dispatch purposes. It rarely worked.

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I don't know about recent developments (NICE and the 1840's) but LI Bus had GPS on all their buses for dispatch purposes. It rarely worked.

 

LIB actually had something that didn't work? Is that possible, like, for real?

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LIB actually had something that didn't work? Is that possible, like, for real?

Sure, the rest of the MTA has plenty of crap that doesn't work. Just so happens people don't make it a priority to complain.

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A maker for the tracking system has still not been chosen. NICE is in the development process and seeing which maker can provide a system compatible with what they have. As of now, the ETA for the tracking system to be up and working is Spring 2014.

The sooner the better

 

Edit: Being that the system will have a passenger count system, they'll be able to track how many passengers are on each bus at any given times and location? So they'll know the peak load points and times and schedule buses accordingly?

Edited by N6 Limited

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Edit: Being that the system will have a passenger count system, they'll be able to track how many passengers are on each bus at any given times and location? So they'll know the peak load points and times and schedule buses accordingly?

 

Correct, at least in theory. That's the advantage of AVL and APC, no more traffic checkers!

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Correct, at least in theory. That's the advantage of AVL and APC, no more traffic checkers!

http://www.cleverdevices.com/clever-devices-products-passenger-counting.htm

 

 

Automatic Passenger Counting (APC) 

Increases Efficiency of Planning and Operations

Automatic Passenger Counting (APC) is an advanced technology solution from Clever Devices that helps transit agencies improve the efficiency of their operations by delivering the most complete and accurate passenger-count data in the industry. The Clever Devices APC solution delivers a robust solution to the problem of accurately and efficiently managing passenger boarding and alighting data. Our APC allows transit agencies to plan according to the actual demands of the ridership, enabling operations that are economically and environmentally sustainable.

Industry-leading accuracy

Clever Devices APC technology puts infrared sensors at bus doors to count passengers as they board and leave. The sensors work with Clever Devices’ patented Intelligent Vehicle Network (IVN) on-board computer and sophisticated software to filter out objects such as bags and other parcels, and deliver passenger counts with the highest degree of accuracy in the industry.

Simplified national transit database reporting

Our APC technology saves time and makes reporting virtually seamless. APC provides transit agencies with an integrated automatic passenger counting and National Transportation Database reporting system. APC improves the accuracy of National Transit Database reporting to over 95% accuracy – a percentage unmatched by any other analysis software in the field.

Puts the buses where the passengers are

Clever Devices APC technology collects ridership data on a per-bus, per-door basis. Passenger counts are stored on the bus and uploaded to a master database, where the information can be readily correlated to scheduled runs, routes, stops, times, date, and destinations.

APC provides users with valuable historical information about their passengers, fixed-route bus running times, and schedule adherence. APC equips transit agencies with best-in-class analysis tools, which enable them to plan efficient routes and schedules that put buses where the passengers are, when they need them.

Key Features:
  • Infrared technology for counting bus passengers
  • Filters that weed out false passenger readings
  • Sophisticated reporting and analysis tools
  • Fixed-route bus running time and schedule adherence data
  • Integrated APC and National Transportation Database reporting
  • Highest level of accuracy in the industry

How would that work on the N6 where passengers may be stuffed in by the door going in and out of the path of the infrared beam?  :P

Also how does it account for when people enter and exit the same door simultaneously?

 

 

BTW I just found this:

Research on Passenger Counting Systems

http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=14207&page=R1

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If you can think of a transit technology or other issue that would make a good research project, chances are TCRP has done it. It can be a wonderful resource!

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