Inter-modal Transport Data Sharing in Hong Kong: Workshop on Exchange Square Smart PTI Challenge
Dates 16 December 2019
Venue: Hongkong Land Training Centre, Jardine House, Central
A use-case workshop took place on 16th December looking in detail at the Exchange Square Public Transport Interchange and ways to improve it, improve operator efficiency and passenger services, including greater mobility around the catchment area that includes a radius of around 500 meters stretching from the ferry piers around the harbour front to the tramway in Central. This Exchange Square Challenge arose as a use case from the workshop on use-cases held in October 2019. Besides the HK Team, the stakeholders included operators of the various modes of transport including taxis, the Transport Department, the EMSD, Hongkong Land as owner of the surrounding office towers and shopping mall, several experienced vendors and Dr Zhou Jiang-ping and Dr Weifeng Li from the HKU Department of Urban Planning & Design who will offer a data trust for computer simulations. Improvements seem to fall into three categories: incremental changes that can be done quite quickly if data-sharing is successful, such as digital passenger information displays and changes that can arise from redesigning the flow of transport and passengers and location points; and longer-term changes that rely upon structural changes such as a possible relocation of the PTI entirely and its replacement with arrival and departure bays, or alternatively its transformation into an airport-quality transport hub. To achieve these improvements also calls for a review of how PTIs are managed and how the stakeholders involved can best coordinate their efforts.
There was a general agreement that sharing certain sets of data was an important next step, for example, data on bus movements and occupancy rates, data on air quality, data on passenger movement across and between buildings and walkways, waiting times, data on journey origins and destinations, and so forth. Where the data is not complete, then ways to collect data need to be assessed. To achieve this, a series of further workshops focused upon such details and the stakeholders involved is to be planned for early 2020. Ways to finance these workshops and the effort put into them was also discussed. It was noted that funding from ITF for the inter-modal transport data programme was expected before too long and hopefully that programme will begin sometime after Chinese New Year. The data trust computer simulations for the Exchange Square Challenge can be fed into that programme with a pilot project in mind.