Home Asides Bronx tabbed as next BusTime borough

Bronx tabbed as next BusTime borough

by Benjamin Kabak

As MTA Board members rail against the authority for neglecting the Bronx’s subway stations, the authority announced today that the city’s northernmost borough will be next in line for BusTime, the real-time bus tracking program currently in place on Staten Island. While the timeline for implementation remains a bit hazy, the authority pledged to have BusTime online in the Bronx and another yet-to-be-determined borough by the end of 2012 with the final two boroughs coming by the end of 2013.

“I am happy to hear that the MTA is expanding this service to the Bronx. Now bus riders in our borough will not have to rely on guesswork and a look into the distance to see when their bus is going to arrive. This service is very convenient and will provide commuters in our borough with up to the minute information. That information will surely come in handy all year round, especially during the cold winter months,” Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. said in a statement.

To ready the Bronx fleet, the MTA and its contractors will outfit 1025 buses with GPS units and the other technological components needed to implement the service. In another 24 months, we’ll all get to enjoy a service that should markedly improve the New York City bus experience as smart phone-enabled bus tracking becomes the city norm. “Knowing how far away your next bus is means you can spend more time with your family or more time at a coffee shop instead of waiting at a bus stop in a state of uncertainty,” MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota said. “About 90% of our customers carry text-message enabled cell phones, so this is a big step forward to help make the lives of our customers a lot easier.”

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Dan January 23, 2012 - 6:05 pm

C’mon Queens!

Phillip Roncoroni January 23, 2012 - 6:14 pm

Given the lack of subway infrastructure in Queens, it’s very disappointing that Queens wasn’t selected as the next borough.

Bolwerk January 24, 2012 - 12:04 am

You can make a case for all the boroughs being the next to get it. We should just be happy it’s being implemented.

WilletsPoint-SheaStadium January 23, 2012 - 6:34 pm

I definitely thought Queens and/or Brooklyn should have been chosen before the Bronx. I would have though in order 1) Queens, 2) Brooklyn, 3) Bronx, 4) Manhattan.


CuriousCat January 23, 2012 - 7:20 pm

Is the MTA still digesting the takeover of the private operators?

al January 24, 2012 - 8:00 pm

They might be doing this starting with the borough with the smallest fleet to largest fleet.

The Cobalt Devil January 23, 2012 - 9:55 pm

So BusTime has been in operation on Staten Island for a few weeks now, and many stops still don’t have the code printed on bus schedules at the various stops. So much for texting a code and getting a reply in a few mins.

Memo to MTA: the devil is in the details, something you guys still haven’t figured out.

Andrew January 23, 2012 - 10:34 pm


“Also missing are QR (Quick Response) codes at the bus stops. The MTA says riders will be able to use a scanner app on a smart phone to read a QR code displayed at a bus stop and get the same information as if they’d texted or gone online for it. It will be six weeks, though, before they’re installed.

It’s been less than two weeks so far. Give them a chance to install the new schedules.

Until then, you can look up the code on the website (in advance, if you don’t have a web-enabled phone) or you can text a location in words.

Andrew January 23, 2012 - 10:36 pm

This isn’t only for smartphones, Ben. Any phone that can send and receive text messages will work. Or any computer with an internet connection.

Jerrold January 24, 2012 - 11:14 am

Slightly off-topic, but I think that everybody here would be interested in THIS column by Clyde Haberman: http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes......f=nyregion


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