The system which tells passengers when the next bus will arrive is to be upgraded across Brighton & Hove and upgraded and expanded in East Sussex.
Brighton & Hove City Council in partnership with East Sussex County Council and Brighton & Hove Bus and Coach Company have awarded Trapeze ITS (UK) Ltd a five year contract to supply and install the real time passenger information system.
The state of the art system will use the latest GPRS technology to improve the accuracy and signal reception for the Real Time Passenger Information, and upgrades the existing award winning system which has been operating in Brighton and Hove, Newhaven and Seaford since 2001 and Eastbourne since 2006.
The upgrade will ensure that more accurate information about services is relayed to bus passengers. Brighton & Hove Bus and Coach Company will be paying for an improved fleet management system for their buses across the city.
Other bus companies will have the opportunity to display their services on the real time system across the city and East Sussex too, including major operators such as Compass Travel, Metrobus and Stagecoach.
Improvements to the existing system are being funded by money awarded to Brighton & Hove City Council and East Sussex County Council from the Department for Transport’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund, which enables local authorities to deliver sustainable travel solutions to boost economic growth and reduce carbon emissions.
Both authorities have also ordered additional bus stop displays for Brighton & Hove and East Sussex. Real time information about bus services will still be available on the internet, smartphones and via text messaging in the city and will also be introduced for bus services in East Sussex.
Ian Davey, Lead Member for Transport at Brighton & Hove City Council said “This is great news for anyone who uses a bus and will encourage more people onto buses. It will mean that you can see exactly what time your bus should arrive and will make journeys much smoother. I am particularly pleased that for the first time all the city’s bus operators will have the opportunity to display their services on the Real Time displays”
Councillor Carl Maynard, Lead Member for Transport and Environment at East Sussex County Council said: “We are pleased to be introducing this real time information system in East Sussex, which should be a great benefit for bus users across the county. You will now be able to see what time your bus arrives at the bus stop and also on your phone or computer before leaving the comfort of your home or office.”
Mike Best, Operations Director at Brighton & Hove Bus and Coach Company said “This is a fantastic opportunity to bring live bus information to routes 28 and 29 in East Sussex for the first time and to provide even more accurate bus information to passengers right across Brighton & Hove.”
The upgrade across Brighton & Hove will be complete before the end of 2014, Other bus operators will also have the opportunity to display their services on the bus stop displays as the project proceeds, which is not possible with the existing system.
The expansion of the system across East Sussex will initially be tested on the Brighton & Hove Bus and Coach Company routes 28 and 29 between Brighton-Lewes-Ringmer-Uckfield-Crowborough-Tunbridge Wells. Following this, additional bus operators and routes will be added to the system in the Lewes, Newhaven and Eastbourne areas in late 2014. Further expansion across East Sussex to include bus services in the Bexhill and Hastings areas and services to and from Kent and West Sussex is planned in 2015.