High-Tech Bus Stations
The major issue with mass transit for many people is the uncertainty of it all. Taking that away makes it more appealing and more efficient for its users. Over in the German city of Hamburg, the public has pushed for electronic bus stations. GPS correlated schedules allow the public to know if their bus will be 2 minutes early or 15 minutes late. While Seattle is not perfect, I think we too should have electronic bus schedules at every stop, METRO does have an automated bus schedule via telephone. People waiting for the bus or planning to take the bus may call the number and check on the timing of their bus route by punching in the route number. (Automated METRO line # 206.456.0609) In Italy, where things are always fashionable, the city of Florence has announced that it will try to be fashionably on time. The city will install 1,000 Eye Stop poles and 200 Eye Stop bus stations. These bus stations named “bus stations of the future” are solar-powered, change colors when the next bus is nearing the station, interacts with users phones, plans routes, allows video advertising capability, and can even twitter the status of a neighborhood bus route. The only thing the bus stop cannot do is check the surrounding air quality, oh wait, it does that too!