BC Transit has signed a contract with Consat for the next phase of the NextRide program that will enhance customer experience and increase ridership throughout the province.
According to a media release from BC Transit, the automatic vehicle location (AVL) technology will be installed in communities and regional transit systems across the province on approximately 315 buses operating on all conventional, fixed routes in BC, including buses in Powell River.
The release stated that NextRide is a BC Transit initiative to install AVL technology on buses across the province. This technology already enables customers across seven transit systems to use web browsers and smart mobile devices to see the location of their bus along its route and its predicted arrival time at an identified stop, the release stated. By downloading the Transit App, customers know exactly when their bus will arrive, and it will allow them to see how full a bus is at any given time.
NextRide will continue to use AVL technology to allow even more customers to see real-time bus locations along routes and identify what predicted arrival times are at any selected stop, the release stated. Onboard, automated stop announcements call out stops to customers riding the bus, which increases comfort and convenience, while also improving the overall accessibility for many using transit.
Through BC Transit, it will provide bus location data to mobility providers such as Google Maps and the partner Transit App, so customers across the province can track and monitor bus routes using their application of choice.
NextRide falls under BC Transit’s smart bus program, which introduces new technologies on buses that improve the customer experience, while also helping grow ridership by making transit more accessible, safer and enjoyable, the release stated. This initiative aims to leverage recent technology advances to provide improved information for customers and bus operators, while also providing greater flexibility, scalability, and value to BC Transit and its local government partners.