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Bus Stop of the Future

Systems & Tools 17 October 2014 | 1.59pm

Every day our interaction with digital technology is extraordinary. We interact with our friends and family via apps on our smart phone, we shop online and most of us now conduct the majority of our work using digital technology. So doesn’t it make sense that we integrate the digital environment into our daily commute also? The Encircle research project is doing just that.

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The ultimate aim of the research is to develop a ‘digital information layer’ to improve the delivery of information in and around public transport stations and interchanges.  The digital information layer is being designed to provide personalised real-time information across different transport modes, improve wayfinding at interchanges and enhance information about ticket and service delivery options. Smartphone apps, interactive media screens and facades are some of the mediums being explored to deliver information to users in a simple, visual and personal way.

Sydney’s Customs House exhibited our work titled “INTERCHANGING – Future designs for Responsive Transport Environments” which showed off the first outcomes of our work, a bus top of the future. The prototype of the next generation of Sydney’s bus stops featured large interactive displays, sensors and sleek wooden paneling

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The digital bus-stop, called INTERCHANGING, has been three years in the making. The digital technology at the bus stop will give real-time information on bus schedules and provide public information, directions, ticketing and even improved surveillance and safety of travelers. It could ultimately incorporate social networking, online shopping, multimodal travel, recycling, as well as information supporting active lifestyles and sustainability initiatives.

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Arup is an industry partner in this ARC Linkage Grant, alongside UTS, UNSW, Sydney Uni, Grimshaw, the City of Sydney and Transport for NSW. The partnership is working to define how today’s digital technology might be used to improve public transport for its users.

For more information on the project head to the Encircle website or you can follow progress on twitter – @Encircle. If you missed out the exhibition at Customs House you can the prototype of the bus stop on display at the UNSW Kensington campus.

Alistair McGill

Sydney, Australia

“I lead the Information & Communications Technology (ICT) network for Arup’s Australasia region. I’m particularly interested in how ICT systems can improve transportation projects, including railway and airport systems. ”

View all posts by: Alistair McGill