Citymapper Launches A 'Smart Bus' Service In London

It wants to make public transport more reactive.

09/05/2017 17:50 | Updated 10 May 2017

Citymapper has already reinvented urban navigation. Now, it wants to reinvent the bus too.

The transport app has teamed up with Transport for London (TfL) to launch a free, trial bus service in the capital.

The Citymapper Smartbus will run for two days (9 and 10 May) on a circular route through the centre of London.

In a Medium post, a Citymapper spokesperson explained that analysis of how people crossed the city had revealed gaps in TfL’s service: “When we studied the existing public transit routes, we realised that they don’t always serve people best, nor evolve quickly enough to accommodate changes in the city.”

Citymapper

To solve the problem, Citymapper’s engineers built a tool, called Simcity, that suggests routes which would best accommodate passengers. It could even pave the way for responsive buses that react to realtime needs, the blog says.

As well as creating new routes, the team rebuilt the bus’s software from the ground up, including the driver management and scheduler systems.

Despite trialling the bus in London, Citymapper said the capital was better served than other major cities. That might suggest further initiatives will take place elsewhere.

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