Transport for London will team up with Google to monitor traffic movements around London as part of the organisation’s business plan designed to deliver “an affordable and modern transport network that works for all Londoners”.
The plan says that the Surface Intelligent Transport System programme will replace many of the critical systems used to manage London’s road network. “It will equip us with new technology fed by real-time data to make our operational decision-making quicker, leading to less disruption and congestion on the network,” it says and adds that it will include a new partnership with Google on its Waze technology that “will see them use our open data, while we use their crowd-sourced data on road conditions to help us manage traffic around incidents and road closures.”
Intelligent Transport Systems are seen as key delivering better journeys. “Our open data strategy has created a community of more than 10,000 developers, powering more than 500 apps that are used by 42 per cent of Londoners,” the report says. “Across our business, we are improving the way we use technology to reduce costs and realise greater benefits. Our new Technology and Data Strategy is shaping our approach.”
TfL also says it will continue to explore how data, technology and information provision can help manage peak demand for transport.
The plan also includes what TfL calls an ambitious programme of modernisation and transformation, freezing TfL fares for the duration of mayor Sadiq Khan’s term, the biggest ever increase in tube capacity, including bringing forward the extension of the Bakerloo Line, doubling investment in cycling, an extended Ultra Low Emission Zone, and a cleaner London bus fleet and efficiency savings to total £800m per year by 2020/21.
“We are global leaders in many technology areas, including ticketing and information provision, with our expertise sought by other transit operators in the UK and worldwide,” it continues. “The number of people using contactless payments continues to rise. Thirty five per cent of pay as you go journeys on the Tube are now paid for with contactless bank cards. A new Oyster app will offer customers a more convenient way to top up, or check their balance and journey history. Top-ups will be available anywhere on the transport network, including buses, within minutes of purchase.