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diane dohm

24 neighbors want the Next Bus MUNI app to give me info on how full the bus is in San Francisco.

diane dohm
Suggested by diane dohm
For example, "Crowded beyond belief!"

Supporters All

Alan Joseph Williams
Luke Bornheimer
Fiona Tang
Trishan Arul
Aurelio Tinio
Lena
Romain Nervil
Corinna King-Brown
Angel Quicksey
Patrick Hunton
Loic
A. L. Pisani
Matthew Mansfield
Meli
Hunter Franks
Andy

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Tom K.

With many of our MUNI routes overflowing with passengers at peak times, I wonder if MUNI has explored double decker buses. They would be a welcome relief to people with disability and others squeezing themselves on the bus.

www.straitstimes.com/breaking-...

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Tom K.

It seems like some sort of integration with this would make sense.

Transit Screen displays communicate real-time transit information at any location with a single, information-rich display. Transit Screen displays include all major transit agencies within the San Francisco Bay Area, including: San Francisco Muni (Buses and Muni Metro), AC Transit (Oakland, Alameda County) and BART. Transit Screen also includes minor agencies Emery Go Round and Dumbarton Express.

transitscreen.com/san-francisc...

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Meli

@Casey - Thanks for the app link, I've downloaded it and will start using it this week during peak commute hours. Pretty cool that it also indicates timetables. I currently just use NextMuni for its simple purpose of timetable, curious to see how Moovit turns out.

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Casey Lauderdale

I just saw this on GOOD: l.rcty.ws/XuZNlS

"The [Moovit] app tracks the location of other people currently on the bus and calculates its arrival. Similarly, you can see how full the bus is"

Thumbb0eca1f248d6e86bd13cdaea40bc41e9

Moovit: Crowdsourcing Public Transit Data for Better Bus Rides | Technology on GOOD

Public transit systems are getting smarter in many cities—it's not uncommon to see electronic displays that tell you when the next bus or train will arrive. But those systems aren't everywhere yet, and can't give you more specific details, like how crowded a particular bus mig...

www.good.is/posts/moovit-crowd...

Andy
Andy
Aug 8, 2013

This is crazy, Casey. Love it.

Posted by Andy on Aug 8, 2013
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Hunter Franks

One of the solutions that came out of the transit hackathon: hattery.com/reroutesf/ was an app that shows you how many riders are on the bus (the MTA does have this data). I can't locate the project site, but I had the chance to go to the hackathon debrief meeting and the MTA is forming a working group to figure out how to implement some of the solutions.

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Casey Lauderdale

Also, in terms of counting, I believe the PresidiGo bus drivers hand count, which MUNI drivers would not be able to do, but sensor technology is getting to be so much cheaper now.

Maybe Motionloft can adapt their pedestrian-counting technology to the buses and feed/aggregate data in a similar way.

www.motionloft.com/

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Casey Lauderdale

I think buses do have a counter on them to measure how many people are getting on, but I'm not 100% sure. I like the idea of the map version. I take the PresidiGo to work and while it's frequently a bit off about the time, the map tracking is pretty accurate and you can tap on the bus or the stop for more info (like how full it is).

It would be great if MUNI had a similar feature where you could tap on the bus to see how full it was + other info (maybe with the integration of twitter and unique bus hashtags).

Check out the PresidiGo bus tracking system: presidiobus.com/map

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diane dohm

well, you guys live in a transit hub of sorts and are fed many lines in different directions. for me, and a lot of other people, it is a problem. i'm an avid muni-rider, and hate having to push and squeeze my way onto a super-full bus. if the muni bus was full, it used to not even stop (not sure if it still does this). if i know that my 38 or 38L are going to be full (ALL BUSES coming to my stop), then i want to know that a few blocks away the 3 is arriving in a couple minutes and has plenty of room on it.

it's really about making smarter apps that do more than 1 thing. i don't want my nextbus app to only tell me when the next bus is coming. i want it to tell me the conditions as well (both on-bus conditions and traffic, meaning slow traffic down X street, so suggest you to use another route that will take you to a similar stop quicker). i'm still thinking that muni would need to be involved at some level, but unsure how at the moment.

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Luke Bornheimer

I was talking with my girlfriend, someone who takes buses and MUNI often, last night about this idea and she wasn't sure this is a problem that needs to be solved. That is, when a bus/train is full, she just waits for the next one or hops on another train or bus nearby. Now, we do live near 14th and Market, so our access to various forms of public transit is pretty great.

But, it still begs the question, how big of a problem is this for people and do they want/need it solved? How many people need to know if the next bus is full and, more importantly, will change their plans immediately upon finding out the next bus is full?

Separately, what areas of the city and what bus lines are most affected by this issue? Could it be solved by taking observational data about 'fullness' and passing that on to SF MUNI, so they can add additional buses on routes and at times that need it?

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Luke Bornheimer

Good stuff, Diane!

The biggest challenge with a 'Wave for public transit' is that Waze works so well because people get value out of having the app open and, as a result, the app gets traffic data because they have the app open. Users of a 'Waze for public transit' wouldn't get any value from having the app open *after* they could see it down the street. As such, the app would be closed, and the phone be in their pocket, by the time they got on the bus. As such, it would take a lot of thought and effort for the user to want to open the app to report that the bus is full.

I'm not saying it's impossible or won't succeed, but a 'Waze for public transit' would have a serious 'chicken and egg' problem…

What about a mobile website that gets your current location, asks you which bus linke you're on and in what direction you're heading and asks if the bus is 'near full' or 'completely full'?

At a higher level, how valuable is this app considering that another bus comes every 15-30 minutes?

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