BOSTON - MBTA GeneralManager Dr. Beverly Scott announced at the MassDOT board meeting today thatcountdown clocks, alerting riders to when the next train is to arrive, are nowup and running at all 53 Heavy Rail (Red, Orange & Blue lines) stations inthe MBTA system. The activation of the countdown clocks at the Blue Line’sOrient Heights station this past week completed the countdown clock system onthe Heavy Rail system.
Intotal, there are now 314 countdown signs bringing information to customers at53 stations in the MBTA system. This makes the MBTA one of the first transitagencies in the country to have all Heavy Rail stations equipped with trainarrival information. Since the introduction of the countdown system in 2012,there have been constant improvements based on customer feedback includingbetter accuracy and increased visibility. In addition, the MBTA introduced“Next Train” signs at Kenmore station this past fall to inform customers as towhich Green Line branch (B, C, & D) would be arriving next.
TheGreen Line, a Light Rail line, is currently equipped with a less-sophisticatedtracking system than the Heavy Rail lines. The Green Line is now undergoing thenecessary work to upgrade the system with both GPS and sensor technologycapable of providing customers with the same countdown capability as the HeavyRail lines. The MBTA expects that the introduction of the countdown system onthe Green Line will begin by the end of 2014.
“Wehave received overwhelming response from customers that they love the countdownclock system,” said General Manager Scott. “This service answers one of the keyquestions in commuting - ‘Where is the train?’ - and I’m thrilled we continueto focus on innovative ways to improve our customers’ experience.”
Sincethe introduction of the countdown system in 2012, the MBTA has been working onsoftware enhancements to improve the quality of countdown information,currently focusing on providing real-time information during diversions anddelays. These improvements and coming additions to the countdown system willalso be available on the MBTA’s real-time data feed for app developers. Inaddition, customers will also start to see the introduction of countdowninformation on the bus system in the coming months, beginning with Forest Hillsstation’s activation in the next few weeks.
Kelly Smith, 857-368-8984