Automated Transit Stop Inventory Model (ATSIM) Development and Technical Support
Transit stop inventories are necessary to track the conditions of stop facilities and their amenities, determine how well areas of interest are served by transit service for federal Title VI requirements, assess the accessibility for people with disabilities and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance, and support Advanced Public Transportation Systems (APTS) applications. The collection and management of stop data can be enhanced by using a software tool. Unfortunately, there is no off-the-shelf software that is comprehensive, easy to use, transit focused, and that captures all the stop data and pictures in one system. Although there have been attempts by software vendors to develop stop inventories, these systems can be costly and fall short in meeting the needs and requirements of the transit agencies.
Therefore, to help Florida’s transit agencies collect and maintain a standard transit stop inventory, the Public Transit Office at the Florida Department of Transportation contracted with the Florida International University to develop the Automated Transit Stop Inventory Model (ATSIM) - a user-friendly mobile-desktop system designed for the collection, analysis, and management of the transit stop inventory for Florida’s transit systems.
The mobile component of the current version of ATSIM consists of a PDA application designed for easy entries of transit stop attribute data in the field. This field collection application runs on HP iPAQ model hw6945, which comes with a relatively accurate Geographical Positioning System (GPS) and a 1.3 megapixel built-in digital camera. The application allows collection of 56 standard attributes, in addition to one general comment field, eight user-defined fields, two GPS location fields (latitude and longitude), and digital photos.
The desktop component of the current system provides the following functions:
- Customize: To customize list box items and user-defined attributes on the PDA interface.
- Install: To install the field data collection system to the PDA.
- Transfer: To transfer and synchronize transit stop inventory data between the desktop and the PDA units.
- Convert: To convert the transit stop inventory file read by the PDA application and the shape files read by GIS applications.
- Apply: To display, query, and manage transit stop inventories on a customized stand-alone GIS interface.
In addition, based on feedback from several transit agencies, additional functionality needs to be added to ATSIM to be incorporated into their business process. ATSIM should have the functionality to exchange of data with other systems, generate work orders for transit stop maintenance, and be updated to a new platform. Under this scope, ATSIM will be developed as a web-based application that will support new field devices. The ATSIM User’s Guide will also be updated to reflect the changes and additions.