Mobile mobility information
Porto has identified difficulties to plan trips as a barrier for people to use public transport. For the current services available in Porto was not easy for a passenger to know all the information on all the available means of transportation.This measure aimed to develop a support decision tool for mobility in public transport that helps people to plan and optimize their trips, based on real time information of different operators.
Implementing sustainable mobility
Porto has integrated real-time information of several public transport operators and has developed an innovative tool called Information for Mobility Support (IMS) that helps people to select the best combination of transportation from their place of departure to their destination, in real time. This system evolved to two different products: InfoBoard (LCDs displays) and MOVE-ME (mobile application).
For people that normally do not use public transport in a certain place it is difficult to know some important information. One of the mains targets of the new policy of transports in Porto is to assure the correct and easy access to some important data such as:
- Which bus to catch;
- Which stop to choose;
- How to go on foot from one given location to the next stop for catching the right bus;
- In view of all public transport alternatives, which one has the best timetable or which is the fastest.
Also, for people that normally use and know the public transport system, the usage of such a system will allow the optimization of the trip, as the passenger will have the opportunity to choose the best option in real time.
This project involved the private company OPT, responsible for the technical research and development, two public transport companies – STCP and Metro do Porto – and 13 private transport companies associated to ANTROP.
At the first stage of the project, it has been installed LCDs displays in public spaces in the Asprela area such as at the Sao Joao Hospital and Medical Faculty of Porto. The panels display maps of the area, timetables, public transport lines available for the current area, main stops and destinations and waiting time for the next service based on real-time information. All this data is available for 16 different operators.
At the second stage of the project, Porto has started the research and development of a dynamic mobile application – MOVE-ME. This phase of the project was the most challenging and demanding. It requires a high-performance system with an intuitive user interface for mobile and other devices.
In February 2012, Porto has launched the system MOVE-ME and it turns out to be a big success.
In September 2012, MOVE-ME has owned the 1st category of CIVITAS Awards 2012 – Technical Innovation.
The key results are the following:
- The IMS system is considered by the general public as useful and efficient. It has accomplished its main objectives: improved the ways of providing transport information; gathered data from 16 different operators in a single platform; centralized its functionalities in users’ needs; promoted the public transport in Porto;
- The two new products developed are a success, specially the mobile applications. People return real good feedback on MOVE ME and ask for the continuity of the service. They refer that a good service like MOVE ME could be charged because it is really useful; they don’t even refer the fact that being a free service is an advantage;
- 21% of the general public questioned during the interviews performed at the final stage of the project, answered that they use less the private car since MOVE ME is available on the market;
- The two main products, resulted of this project, have now new implementations in other cities in Portugal.