Project Summary

Data integration and management platform for city transit planners to manage and share transit data.

Challenge Details

Memphis Area Transportation Authority (MATA) and the City of Memphis Office of Performance Management hope to develop a streamlined process for providing in-house transit data as required by the Federal Transit Administration’s National Transit Database program (NTD) to management within the MATA organization, agencies outside of MATA, and the public.

If successful, this process could be replicated for over 600 other transit agencies throughout the United States.

MATA’s Planning & Scheduling Department is responsible for long-range planning and scheduling of transit service in the Memphis area.  Our department accumulates data from various departments within the organization that is used by management to make decisions and to ensure that the service provided meets Board adopted service standards and performance measures.  Our office is responsible for reporting this data to the MATA Board of Commissioners and the City of Memphis Office of Performance Management.

MATA is trying to obtain data generated by a host of in-house programs and share that data in a useable format.  MATA has several software programs and systems that generate or capture real-time information such as ridership, mileage, fuel usage, engine performance data, and other transit vehicle location data.  The task is to seamlessly stream this information to decision-makers to make more timely decisions regarding changing demand and resources and provide the public with data that they could use for trip planning, payment, and other needs.  The goal is to create an integrated transit network where transit users can obtain system data to make travel decisions and report system information to other funding agencies such as the City of Memphis to help monitor performance and track performance measures.

MATA faces many challenges related to obtaining data from various programs within the organization and conveying it to MATA’s management, the City of Memphis, and the public. MATA’s management would be able to make better decisions and adjust resources to meet system demands in a more efficient manner and respond more quickly.  The City of Memphis and its residents would receive better information to utilize MATA’s transit system and services while improving operational efficiencies throughout both organizations.

MATA management would receive system-related performance information to track changes in ridership demand, fuel usage, engine performance, and vehicle location data for internal decision-making and relay other components of this information to external stakeholders such as the City’s Office of Performance Management and the general public for their use.

Specific outcomes may include:

  • • Automate National Transit Database (NTD) reporting both in-house and allow for access by the public
  • • Creation of an in-house website/webpage for MATA staff and Management to review real-time data and performance for ridership statistics, vehicle location & condition, maintenance and performance of vehicles, fare collection, financial information, and onboard security
  • • Creation of public website/webpage for the public to view ridership statistics, vehicle data, and financial data and be available in multiple languages
  • • Creation or integration of a smartphone application for users to access the information included in item 2 and 3 above with MATA staff having access to more detailed information, based on security level as included in item 2.
  • • A user-interface to allow MATA customers to provide feedback regarding the data provided or answer survey questions related to MATA’s services
  • • Reduce the amount of phone calls seeking information regarding MATA’s services
  • • Reduce MATA staff time compiling and disseminating information to decision-makers and the public
  • • Improve the public perception of MATA through open sharing of information and transparency in data reporting
  • • Decrease customer wait time for information, reduce phone and in-person inquiries, and allow MATA staff more time to focus on critical issues