GPS set to arrive on Metro Link buses, three years late
Bus riders may be able to call GoTime and get a GPS-calculated timeuntil their bus arrives starting this fall, three years after they werefirst told they’d be able to.
Bus riders may be able to call GoTime and get a GPS-calculated time until their bus arrives starting this fall, three years after they were first told they’d be able to.
The ultimate goal is for people to be able to call their bus stop and get the actual time a bus is coming, not just the scheduled time.
The program was first touted by Metro Transit when it began overhauling its GoTime system in summer of 2007. At that point they said all buses would be equipped with GPS trackers by that fall.
While the devices got installed, a series of delays kept them from going active. This included expansion of the bus fleet and other initiatives taking higher priority, such as installing security cameras.
The new system is being tested now and Metro Transit hopes it will be “fully or mostly operational” by this fall.
“As with any major project it’s been ongoing for a couple years because we do want to ensure it’s in perfect working condition before we ‘turn on’ any piece of it,” said Metro Transit spokeswoman Lori Patterson.
“It’s all contingent on all of these things going right as you test them, because the big thing for us is we don’t want to give misinformation.”
Patterson said the massive project, which has involved outside groups as well, was highly complex and came across complications over the years.
She said the real-time results will start to be introduced on lower-density routes and Metro Link buses, with gradual expansion to almost every route by the fall.
The testing might also explain why some people who try to call GoTime get a message saying the system is down.
Patterson said those problems are likely due to the current Metro Transit system tests.