Updates Will Soon Come To The 7 Line
L Train riders can now use their phones to see when the next train will arrive.The real-time train arrival estimates that appear on platform countdown clocks are now available via the MTA Subway Time iPhone and web app, the MTA announced Monday, Jan. 13.
“Know before you go-we like to repeat this catchy slogan because it is so much more helpful to have information with you before you get to our station than once you’re already there,” said MTA Chairman Thomas F. Prendergast. “That’s why we’re delighted to be able to extend the reach of our real-time data so that our L Line customers can have it wherever they are, and make a decision about when to venture out from the comfort of your own home, coffee shop, office, or wherever you may be.”
Apple usesrs can get the app in the Apple app store. A web-based, desktop version is available at https://bit.ly/1eOUQg4.
A number of apps developed by external tech developers include the same real-time data feed as well. Information about many of those apps can be found at the MTA’s online App Gallery at this link: https://web.mta.info/apps/
MTA Subway Timetrade; is designed to be quick to load and easy to use. The opening screen displays icons for subway lines served by the app. Users can select a line to see all the stations it serves, then select a station to see real-time arrival estimates for up to nine trains approaching that station from each direction.
For simplicity, stations that serve multiple lines show all trains combined in a single list, it was noted.
Arrival time estimates can be refreshed anytime by touching the icon in the upper right of the screen. The exact time the data was provided is displayed at the bottom of the screen.
The app is synchronized with the mta.info website, displaying planned service changes and real-time service disruptions.
The new real-time data is also being made available simultaneously in raw form to app developers via a GTFS-Real Time feed on the MTA’s cloud-hosted open data portal. Developers who wish to add L line real-time data to their existing apps, or learn how to use the raw open data on any of the lines that have real-time train arrivals, can access it at https://mta.info/developers.
The addition of the L Line’s realtime information into the app is made possible by a technology known as Communications-Based Train Control (CBTC), the modernized signal system employed on the L Line that also powers the countdown clocks located overhead on L station platforms.
Inaddition, signaling on the 7 Line is currently being upgraded to CBTC. The project is expected to be completed in 2016, and the 7 could be added to Subway Time thereafter.
The MTA hopes to have countdown clocks in place at the remainder of the lettered lines within three to five years, through digital means overlaid on top of the existing signal system that uses technology dating back to the 1930s.