MTA Press Releases

Press Release
March 19, 2008
IMMEDIATE
Trip Planner Voted "Best of New York" by Center For Digital Government

Trip Planner, MTA NYC Transit's web based travel itinerary service has been chosen by The Center for Digital Government for one of its "Best of New York" Awards, winning the top award for the category 'Project Best Advancing Service to the Public'. The award was presented to New York City Transit at an awards program hosted in Albany today by the Center for Digital Government, a division of e.Republic.

"We believe Trip Planner is by far the most accurate travel itinerary provider there is for New York City," said Paul Fleuranges, NYC Transit Vice President for Corporate Communications. "This award from the Center for Digital Government is proof that we are providing our customers with quality digital customer service."

Trip Planner went live on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's www.mta.info website in late December 2006 and has seen a steady increase in daily usage ever since. In February 2008, 6,912 customers used Trip Planner on an average weekday, while 5,512 accessed the program on an average weekend day, a 272% increase over average daily usage and a 287% increase over average weekend usage in February 2007.

"The Trip Planner application provides our customers with the ability to obtain a travel itinerary at their convenience by simply going on line," said Fred Benjamin, Assistant Vice President for Customer Services. "Combined with telephone operations at our Travel Information Center, Trip Planner allowed NYC Transit to provide travel information to 3.1 million customers in 2007, a 65% increase over the 1.9 million customers we served in 2006 by phone only," added Benjamin.

The Trip Planner web application was developed by NYC Transit's TIS / Internet Technologies group using technology protocols to interface with the underlying Automated Travel Information System (ATIS) database. The application uses customer provided parameters such as starting point, destination, and target departure or arrival time. Through their PCs and web enabled smart phones and PDAs, customers are able to access NYC Transit's travel information by entering a street address, landmark or cross streets to obtain travel information. Trip Planner provides customers with more search options, including service in the area and route schedule information.

"Trip Planner was developed by the TIS - Internet Technologies group in partnership with Corporate Communications to allow our customers within the five boroughs around the clock access to travel information from the comfort of their PC," said Sohaib Mallick, Senior Director, Technology & Information Services at NYC Transit. "Not only is Trip Planner the most comprehensive on line itinerary provider, but with the addition of state of the art on-line mapping capabilities provided by Microsoft Virtual Earth, it is the most graphically friendly."

In addition, Trip Planner provides customers with accessible travel options along with Service Advisory and Service Alert information. All itinerary results can be emailed and printed. Several enhancements to the program are planned for 2008, among those are a station locator, places of interest and address finder features.

Trip Planner can be accessed by logging on to http://tripplanner.mta.info. Trip Planner can also be accessed via any web enabled phone or PDA at http://tripplanner.mta.info/mobile.

Center for Digital Government

The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local governments. (www.centerdigitalgov.com)

e.Republic, Inc.

e.Republic, Inc. is the nation's leading publishing, research, event and new media company focused on information technology for the state and local government and education markets. (www.erepublic.com)