MTA Implements New System That Lets You Know Bus Arrival Times

11m34-480The panic rushes through your body as the pressure to make your final decision increases with every passing second.  15 minutes is all you have.  A weird, contrived facial expression envelops your face as you try to do the math.  It’ll take 20 minutes to walk. 15 minutes is the longest possible time you’d have to wait assuming that you JUST missed the bus.  It should take 6 minutes to get there by bus.  But, there is absolutely no way of knowing when the next bus is coming. This is starting to remind you of the physics problem on your final that made you fail for the year.  If one train is X distance from point A and another train going in the opposite direction is X distance traveling Y mph at which point will they fly?  Er. Well, it was something like that.  The confusion is taking over and you need to sit down.  Take a deep breath and calm down because the mayor of NYC has finally heard your cries for mercy and has decided to solve all of your problems.  The answer? Electronic countdown displays.

These electronic countdown displays are updated every 30 seconds to show how long of a wait there is until the next bus comes.  Installing satellite tracking and GPS devices enables computers to estimate buses’ times of arrival. The program will start on 34th Street in Manhattan as a trial program pioneered by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.  Eight signs will be installed along 34th Street that will show, in real time, the approximate arrival time for the bus.  The Mayor has promised to have installed this system in over half of the city’s bus system by 2013.

People will no longer have to wait in the cold for extended periods of time anymore, unsure of when the bus will arrive.  Afraid you’ll miss the bus if you stop in Starbucks to get hot chocolate?  Worry no more with this new system. A similar system can already be found at Yale University’s campus where it has been very successful. This helpful change is just one part of the Mayor’s mass campaign platform to improve the city’s mass transit infrastructure. (Via the NY Times)



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