More Real Time Bus Data Available
Five more routes now let riders know exactly when the bus will come.
Good news arrived today for Milwaukee bus riders. The Milwaukee County Transit System has published real-time data on five more routes, including one of the longest (route 80) and one of the busiest (route 30). Real-time data allows riders to know the arrival time of buses via a website, text message, or phone system. The system gives riders up-to-the-minute information on when a bus will arrive at a given stop.
As we’ve covered in the past, the data has been a long time in coming. First referenced in late 2010, implementation required a lengthy procurement process that included hardware upgrades to the communications system on each bus. The real-time data also works in conjunction with a new annunciator system on the buses that states the upcoming stop and transfer points. Both are a welcome upgrade over the former Transit TV system (which broadcast ads as well as announcing stops) and paper schedules.
Most customers will likely interact with the real-time data through the website with a desktop, laptop or mobile device. Whether by bookmarking the pages for their most-used stops, or by looking at the constantly updating map of bus locations, riders will be able to spend less time waiting for the bus.
Customers will also be able to receive estimated arrival times by a texting MCTS [BUS STOP NUMBER] to 41411 or by calling the information line at 414-344-6711. Each bus stop is now equipped with a unique number, just above the route numbers. Riders can also sign-up to receive automated notifications everyday.
Here’s hoping the pace at which the real-time information is rolled out gets faster and faster. For more background on the system and ways to access it, see our article from April.