I enjoyed taking the bus when I was a kid, and I still enjoy it today. The city bus. The PVTA. I’d much rather take a bus to work than drive. Although reading a bus schedule was an ability I had honed as a ‘tween, not having to do so in Spain was even better; the buses just ran. All the time. Just missed one? Another one is right behind!
I had to take the bus just the other day. I needed to get to West Springfield and the Memorial Bridge was closed to pedestrians so it was PVTA time. I went to their website to look up the schedule of the best route to serve my purpose and found a link to an app: myStop.
I realized after downloading it that it kept real time data for bus location for every bus on every route in the system. It isn’t precise; what it really communicates is the last stop the bus has passed with about a 30 second delay. Still, it’s pretty impressive. I had heard about these systems for years but had never seen one linked to our local transit authority.
Because our house sits 15 feet from a bus stop I occasionally check on the progress of the buses which service that stop…and the accuracy of the app.
Even better, half a dozen lines run on the major east/west and north/south corridors a block from my house to the west and to the north; I can check on every line OR click on any stop and see which buses are due to pass.
Being able to see which buses are where can make the entire system easier to use. My wife grew up in the ‘burbs and the bus remains a mystery to her. Maybe with this app it will seem easier to use, only time will tell. In the mean time I’m going to enjoy checking the app just for the fun of it.
You don’t have to tell me how bizarre that is. I know.