NEW BEDFORD, MA – Waiting for the bus just got a digital upgrade – and Southeastern Regional Transportation Authority (SRTA) riders now have a new tool to help them better navigate South Coast routes.
Electronic signs at both the New Bedford and Fall River SRTA bus terminals will display real-time schedule information for all routes operating in the system beginning in April, 2021. It’s the right information, at the right time, and moves SRTA in the right direction.
“This is among the many technology system upgrades we have been undertaking to bring our transit system into the modern era,” says SRTA Administrator Erik B. Rousseau.
Two signs are located outside of each terminal, and one inside of both waiting rooms, in the cities. All of them will let riders know when their bus is arriving. The new signs are state-of-the-art transportation technology from the U.S. company Clever Devices based in Long Island, NY.
“This technology will help our riders better move through their day as well our network,” explains Rousseau. “It takes the guesswork out of waiting for the bus. Especially when our drivers have to deal with inclement weather or a detour due to road work.”
The outside sign displays consist of three lines which display time and date, and cycle through the arrivals at each terminal. The inside boards are much larger and have several lines of display – much like departure boards in a train station or airport. They will count down the minutes until each bus arrives at the station.
All signs are equipped with an assistive listening device for the visually impaired. Pressing an easy to locate button on a speaker will turn the text into audio, in English or Spanish.
In addition to being of benefit to riders, the real-time data will help SRTA better direct its resources and improve its quality of service. Indeed, even while adjusting course to accommodate changes imposed upon all public transportation due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the authority is keeping its eye on the road ahead.
As the new signage comes online, SRTA is also launching monthly memos to riders on its website, srtabus.com and through local media outlets to better communicate with its passengers. Patrons can also expect more engagement through social media accounts like Facebook.com/SRTAbus.
City of New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell notes that, “public transportation plays a vital role in people’s lives, and SRTA’s commitment to finding new ways to embrace its mission and enhance mobility continues to make their services more accessible to all who use them.”
Empowering riders with more practical information is a reflection of SRTA’s unique role on the South Coast in Massachusetts. The fixed route and demand response service provides public transportation to residents of Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Fall River, Freetown, Mattapoisett, New Bedford, Somerset, Swansea, and Westport. Thus, SRTA connects the South Coast together through its hub terminals in New Bedford and Fall River.
Fall River Mayor Paul Coogan comments, “These upgrades will make it easier for our residents to take advantage of SRTA’s services, which are fundamental to the well-being of the Fall River community. This step represents SRTA’s commitment to connecting the Southeastern Massachusetts community through efficiency, accessibility and innovation.”
Public transportation by its very nature moves forward – and SRTA is committed to keep fulfilling the expectations of its riders into the future. New technology, more engagement and innovative thinking not only define the transportation authority, but the region it serves.
Which is why a creative commitment to mobility for all is SRTA in real time – for all times.
- The Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SRTA) was established in 1974 in response to Massachusetts’ legislation which authorized the establishment of regional transit authorities to serve the Commonwealth. SRTA terminals are located at 134 Elm Street in New Bedford and Louis D. Pettine Transportation Center at 118 4th Street in Fall River. Find out more at srtabus.com.