MBTA to provide crowding updates in effort to ease coronavirus concerns

BOSTON (WHDH) - With more workers expected to return to work next week in Phase 2 of Massachusetts’ four-phase reopening plan, the MBTA says it is working to nail down a plan to provide commuters with crowding updates to ease coronavirus concerns.

Realt-time crowding updates will soon be available on a mobile app and on digital message boards at transit stations across the Commonwealth.

The MBTA is finalizing plans to alert commuters about which buses are crowded and which are not, according to Steven Miller, who works for Transit App.

“Providing crowding information in real-time allows people to make those decisions and see actually if there is only a handful of people on a bus and if it poses a risk,” Miller said.

Transit App currently provides updates on whether MBTA vehicles are running on time or behind schedule.

Miller says the app will soon offer seat information.

“I open up the G1 route in Springfield and then I zoom in on that bus and you can actually see it says two seats available,” Miller said while showing off the app’s new feature.

The MBTA says it is first focused on making real-time bus information on the most heavily-used routes available to the public. Over the summer, that information is expected to be expanded to more buses and subway cars.

A timeframe for when the new updates will be up and running has not yet been announced.

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