8 December 2011
Bus operators in Hertfordshire have gone smart following the successful implementation of a smart ticketing and real-time passenger information scheme project managed by WYG.
English National Concessionary Travel Scheme card holders will be the first to benefit from the system as they simply touch their card on the new bus ticket machines and the information on the card’s microchip is read. Smart ticketing allows passengers to load tickets or credit in advance of travel which will speed up boarding times and reduce queuing.
Hertfordshire County Council appointed transport specialists from global multi-disciplinary consultancy WYG to prepare the specification and manage the delivery of the project.
Richard Holland, Principal Transport Planner, WYG said: “There are many benefits to smart ticketing including reduced cash handling and more accurate reimbursement of concessionary fares. In addition to being fitted with smart card technology, the ticket machines have been fitted with two-dimensional bar code readers to facilitate ticketing using mobile phones.
“As part of the project real-time passenger information has also been introduced. This will provide passengers with accurate departure and arrival times and reduce worries about reliability and punctuality.”
The real-time passenger information system has been designed so that information will be available for all stops on equipped services via the internet and mobile phones. The mobile website will form part of a recently rolled out mobile phone application that provides timetables for individual stops through the use of quick recognition (QR) codes. The application has been provided by Intalink partnership which is responsible for the provision of public transport information in Hertfordshire.
Stuart Pile, Cabinet Member for Transport & Highways at Hertfordshire County Council said: “We’re excited about this new technology, which is helping us provide users with everything they need to make the most of Hertfordshire’s bus network. The growing package of hi-tech systems we’re rolling out across the county is making using the bus a more attractive alternative to the car, which in turn will help reduce congestion and carbon emissions across Hertfordshire.”
The new technology has been installed on around 150 buses. Further vehicles operating in Hertfordshire will be equipped with the technology to provide real-time passenger information from 2012 onwards.