New innovative solution to increase take-up on TfL Bus services


#1

I’m not a software or a web developer, but I am a relatively new mum. I am seeking to make travelling on public transport easier and convenient for all parents and wheelchair users alike by allowing them to be informed of buggies and wheelchair space in real time as and when needed.

I identified a gap in the market for an App which provides real-time status updates of the occupancy of buggies and wheelchair space on public transport prior to boarding. The Pramlive App is a new and innovative way of providing real-time availability of buggy and wheelchair space capacity on London buses.

Using wireless Parking Spot Sensors that allow real-time detection of the state of occupation of buggies & wheelchair space on Tfl buses; when space becomes vacant, the onboard technology recognises that the buggy has left the designated space and automatically updates information on the app. Members of the public can log into the app to find out if the next bus is already occupied with the full capacity of buggies or wheelchairs prior to boarding. This will save many the inconvenience of waiting for a bus, only to be told to wait for the next one; and allows the commuter to plan alternative means to complete their journey ahead. An experience which I have shared many a time, which I found to be not only frustrating, and an inconvenience, I was rather astounded that a solution had yet to be found.

It’s a niche market however, the target audience will be wheelchair users and parents who are often overlooked when it comes to accessibility on the bus network. Commuters can use the Pramlive app alongside the ‘Bus times live countdown app’ as an additional feature or a separate app to keep constantly informed in real time. I really hope that this is an idea that TfL will back and a solution will bring about more users of the TfL bus service, reduce car congestion and air pollution, and in addition get more parents such as myself out & about without the constant worry of being turned away at the bus stop.


#2

Hi,

You might be interested to know that there is project in the pipeline that can do what you are suggesting. It’s the

The three month trial will take place on seven buses across five bus routes - the 55, 47, 222, 507, and 521 - and what’s fascinating is that it will use a number of different counting techniques, with the aim of the trial being to discover what works best for collecting data.

According to TfL, the technologies trialled will be:

  • Cameras aimed across the bus floor, to observe footsteps of passengers getting on and off buses
  • Sensors over each bus door
  • Real-time analysis of existing CCTV footage
  • Analysis of changes to the buses weight and air pressure (this is definitely the one that intrigues us > the most)
  • Wifi data collection

I would suggest that the “Real-time analysis of existing CCTV footage” may be able to provide the data needed for real-time Wheelchair spaces.


#3

Good luck with that!
I’ve been trying to get Countdown improved to take account of depot-end changes and road closure diversions for years now. Either the right people don’t read this forum or they’re too proud to change the specs initially “cast in stone”.
However, everything seems to get done for pushchairs!