Lost in the chaos of the 106th Street water main break was the MTA introducing a new touch screen travel station titled “On The Go!”. Here are more details courtesy of the press release I received:
The On the Go! Travel Station — a new interactive touch-screen that offers MTA travel information and a whole lot more – was launched today at the Bowling Green station (4 and 5 lines) as part of a pilot project that within the next few weeks will include a total of five subway stations and commuter rail hubs.
The sleek, stainless steel enclosure supports a large screen with a colorful display, offering customers information about their entire trip, from planning with Trip Planner+, real-time service status, escalator & elevator status and local neighborhood maps. In addition, the MTA has partnered with third party developers to include applications which provide additional information, such as local history, shopping and dining options nearby provided by third-party applications mycity app and Zagats. As added features, the screens will provide news and weather information. Taken together, this is an unprecedented amount of information made available to subway and commuter rail customers in one handy tool.
“With On the Go, we are adding yet another layer of state-of-the-art customer communications into our subway system, but it goes far beyond the already helpful information provided by our countdown clocks and the displays in our new technology subway cars,” said MTA NYC Transit President Thomas F. Prendergast. “On the Go will provide riders with instant information that makes using the transit system more efficient.”
As part of collaboration with Cisco, this pilot demonstration project is designed to be a new and innovative travel tool useful to daily commuters and tourists alike.
On the Go! utilizes Cisco’s Interactive Services Solution, a flexible and scalable platform which enables digital interactions through rich media, live video, real-time information, and user-friendly management tools. The On the Go! Travel Station leverages the power of network connectivity and interactive digital media to improve passenger experience, increase operational efficiency, and create new sources of revenue.
“Cisco is pleased to collaborate with the MTA in bringing real-time information and interactive video content to transit passengers in New York City. Travelers can better plan their trips, gain more visibility into service changes and advisories, and obtain information on businesses and other locations in their local neighborhoods or as they explore the city,” said Syed Hoda, general manager, Emerging Solutions Group, Cisco. “We have worked with cities all over the world, as a part of our Smart+Connected Communities initiative, in using the network as the platform to transform physical communities to connected communities. This pilot demonstration shows the potential for technology to connect, enhance and improve the quality of life for communities.”
The On the Go! Travel Stations will be available for customer use beginning today at Bowling Green. The pilot will also be rolled out at Penn Station (LIRR), Grand Central Terminal (Metro-North), Atlantic Avenue – Pacific St (2, 3, 4, 5, B, D N Q R) and Jackson Heights /Roosevelt Avenue (7, E, F, M, R).
On the Go! can be customized for a specific location and by time of day. For example, at the Penn Station Travel Station, during the morning, the screen will default to subway information and in the evenings it will default to LIRR service. All content is remotely managed from a secure web-based management system and applications can be changed or updated as needed.
Designed by Antenna Design New York Inc., the stainless steel enclosure and its components are extremely durable and easy to clean and maintain. Depending on customer acceptance and success of the pilots, On the Go! may eventually be installed in stations throughout the system. It is anticipated that the On the Go! Travel Stations will generate significant advertising income, which would help to defray the costs of installation.
Hopefully riders find this tool useful & it turns into a permanent device found in all stations along with it being a money maker for the MTA. I will try to get down to Bowling Green in the next day or so to take a look & test it out.
xoxo Transit Blogger