Real-Time Bus Arrival Information System: An Empirical Evaluation

The provision of real-time information concerning bus arrival times could potentially reduce the uncertainty associated with public transport trips and improve the overall level of service. In addition, real-time predictions might enable operators to apply proactive control strategies. Even though considerable research efforts were devoted to the development of bus arrival prediction schemes, there is a lack of knowledge on the performance of real-world operational systems. This article aims to investigate the performance of a commonly deployed real-time information generation scheme. A conventionally used scheme is implemented and evaluated based on an empirical analysis. Performance metrics concerning the prediction error accuracy and reliability and their impact on expected waiting time were formulated from both passengers’ and operators’ perspectives. The real-time information generator was applied on the trunk line network in Stockholm, Sweden. The accuracy and reliability of the prediction scheme was analyzed by comparing the generated predictions against vehicle positioning data. This scheme was found to systematically underestimate the remaining waiting time by 6.2% on average. The provision of real-time information yields a waiting time estimate that is more than twice as close to the actual waiting times than the timetable. This difference in waiting time expectations is equivalent to 30% of the average waiting time.


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  • Accession Number: 01596937
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 23 2016 3:00PM