Archive | Transportation Technology

TriMet Unveils All-Electric Test Bus

TriMet held a press event today to unveil an all-electric bus.

The bus is on loan to the agency by the manufacturer, BYD Motors, for testing and demonstration purposes for the next two weeks.

I attended the event today, took a short demo ride, and interviewed TriMet and BYD representatives for this video.

The bus will be tested on a variety of routes with varying topography, and the public is invited to take free rides and give feedback. TriMet will be tweeting the routes served by the test bus.

You can also view TriMet’s press release here:
http://howweroll.trimet.org/2014/06/19/were-testing-an-all-electric-bus/

(It should be noted that the press release refers to 24hrs of operation. I asked for clarification on this and what they mean is that the bus can meet a standard daily duty cycle on most routes with a single charge – not 24hrs of continuous operation.)

TriMet APIs Keep Getting Better

TriMet is holding their second developer event, a hackathon, in conjunction with the Open Source Bridge conference in a couple of weeks.

Today, in preparation for the hackathon, TriMet released version 2 of their arrivals API, including information on detours, delayed vehicles and even experimental features like how heavily loaded a bus is…

The also released a (machine readable) glossary of English-Spanish translations of common terms used in user interfaces for transit. That’s something I had suggested at the first developer event. Thanks for listening, Bibiana!

Hack on.

Transforming Transportation Through Connectivity

PSU Transportation Seminar:

Speaker: Robert Bertini, Professor, Portland State University
Topic: Transforming Transportation Through Connectivity
When: Friday, June 6, 2014 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Where: PSU Urban Center Building, SW 6th and Mill, Room 204
Abstract: The transportation system is the backbone of the United States’ economy, and transportation is an essential part of everyday life for American citizens. It is essential that the transportation system continue to provide accessibility and connectivity to an ever-evolving global economy. A key way to do so is to embrace, develop and implement new technologies. One of the newest and most promising facets of transportation-related technology is in the field of connected mobility. The vision behind connected mobility is of a transportation system where vehicles, travelers, and infrastructure are all wirelessly connected with one another and able to transmit real-time data about things like weather, location, and vehicle and infrastructure status. Such a degree of connectivity could have substantial benefits for the safety, mobility, and sustainability of the domestic transportation system, including accident prevention and congestion reduction. In recent years, major strides have been made into the research and development of connected mobility technology and some field-testing has commenced, but there is a need for more attention and investment from stakeholders throughout the transportation community and beyond.

Your Questions For Neil, “Round 5”, Part 4 – Potpourri

And now, the final segment of our video interview with TriMet’s Neil McFarlane. This episode, “Potpourri”, featuring a variety of your questions.

Topics include:

  • Bikes on MAX cars – are there ways to add capacity?
  • Bike parking and bikeshare at MAX stations
  • TriMet’s take on carbon emissions – what will it take to get to net zero emissions?
  • Hybrid buses, past present and future, and electric buses
  • Weight of buses, number of wheels, and damage to roads
  • The new e-fare system (announced officially just before we recorded the interview)
  • Equity in the fare payment system, especially for cash-only users

Thanks once again to the Portland Opera for tolerating the mayhem of our intrepid video crew in their conference room.

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