New York City Transit announced that it will move ahead with the second phase of a pilot project for On the Go! Travel Stations, adding at least 77 of the interactive touch-screen kiosks throughout the system that offer MTA travel information and a whole lot more.
The initial pilot launched in September 2011 has been a success. Placed at the Bowling Green, Atlantic Ave-Barclays Center, and Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Ave subway stations as well as Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal, the On the Go! Travel Stations have been offering customers information about their entire trip, from planning with Trip Planner+, real-time service status, escalator & elevator status and local neighborhood maps.
Based on positive customer feedback to the kiosks, and the desire to determine if the network could work on a larger scale, the decision was made to move forward with the second phase of the pilot. In February 2012, MTA Real Estate issued a Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) soliciting responses from entities interested in being an advertising agent or sponsor of a future, large scale network of On the Go! Travel Stations.
As a result of this RFEI, the MTA will enter into license agreements with CBS Outdoor and Control Group Inc. requiring that the two licensees purchase the kiosks and deliver them to NYC Transit for installation. CBS Outdoor will provide 30 kiosks and Control Group will provide anywhere from 47 to 90 kiosks.
This pilot will provide NYC Transit with a Digital Signage Network that will allow NYC Transit to communicate with customers at the station level, especially in times of planned and unplanned events, reducing the need to plaster stations with paper signage.
“We are excited to be using digital signage to communicate with our customers, as we believe it will provide us with a more efficient communications channel that will also provide an additional stream of revenue,” said Paul J. Fleuranges, the MTA’s Senior Director of Corporate and Internal Communications. Digital Out of Home technology is an exciting industry and we’re looking forward to the benefits it will provide to us and our customers.”
As part of this proof of concept phase of the pilot, the licensees will have the creative freedom to design the customer interface and to customize the transit-related applications that will reside on the kiosks, while also selling and displaying advertising to defray the related capital and operating expenses. During this phase, NYC Transit will evaluate customer perceptions, the ability to post and update information quickly, and advertising revenue opportunities. This information will inform decisions regarding deployment of additional kiosks, customer communication strategies and future advertising contracts encompassing digital media and platforms.
The On the Go! Travel Stations can be customized for a specific location and by time of day. For example, at the Penn Station Travel Station, during the morning, the screen will default to subway information and in the evenings it will default to LIRR service. All content is remotely managed from a secure web-based management system and applications can be changed or updated as needed.