UK bus open data project gains momentum

Department for Transport is working with MaaS specialist Moovit to utilise the Bus Open Data Service, a central source of timetable, bus location, and fare data.

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Bus passengers will be able to plan their journeys far more accurately
Bus passengers will be able to plan their journeys far more accurately

The UK Department for Transport is working with mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) company Moovit to utilise the Bus Open Data Service (BODS), a central source of timetable, bus location, and fare data of every bus operator across England.

 

Operators are now committed to openly publishing and storing transport information in BODS’ standard format to empower passengers with the most precise and updated bus information.

 

Pioneer project

 

With Moovit’s assistance, the BODS pioneer project from the Department for Transport is standardising and openly publishing bus operator data so that passengers across England will be able to better plan journeys down to the minute, know how much their bus ride will cost in advance, and save time waiting for the bus.

 

It will also enable developers to add BODS’ information into existing or new apps and products meant to provide riders all they need to more easily plan and ride efficient and accurate journeys.

 

Moovit’s technical expertise is helping guide the Department for Transport in making BODS information usable for MaaS platforms. Moovit is also working with local transport authorities of all sizes to integrate their BODS data into the Moovit app, providing passengers with precise journey planning, fares, disruptions data, and real-time arrival information.

 

Moovit recently collaborated on a similar project with Transport for the North (TfN), the subnational transport body representing 20 local transport authorities, on TfN’s Open Data Hub. The open-source fares and disruptions data for developers, has enabled the essential workers riding North England’s public transport services with the tools they need to more easily plan and ride efficient, accurate, and safe journeys during a time when timetables consistently change.

“This will significantly further the ability of BODS to digitally transform the delivery of bus services and, ultimately, the passenger experience”

The Open Data Hub is an initiative of TfN’s £150m Integrated and Smart Travel programme.

 

“This will significantly further the ability of BODS to digitally transform the delivery of bus services and, ultimately, the passenger experience,” said Meera Nayyar, head of passenger experience (buses and taxis) at the Department for Transport. “Moovit will help revolutionise the way in which the DfT, and other stakeholders, collect and analyse bus data, enabling us to identify network optimisations more easily and help us support operators in reporting their on-time performance statistics.”

 

Luke Redfern, UK partnerships manager at Moovit, said the company and the Department for Transport share a vision of simplifying urban mobility for millions of UK residents: “We are delighted to work at the forefront of the development of the world-leading BODS system with the Department for Transport, and bring confidence back to public transport riders as they navigate their journeys.”

 

Bus operators are legally required to provide timetable data by the end of 2020 and fare, ticket and location data by January 2021. The regulations aim to boost passenger confidence, as well as help keep fares down via greater transparency across different operators.

 

Moovit was acquired by Intel in 2020. Its urban mobility apps guide people in getting around town effectively and conveniently, using any mode of transport and serves over 930 million users in more than 3,400 cities across 112 countries.

 

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