(Image / BC Transit Facebook)

Transit users in Victoria may notice a few cool upgrades in the near future.

Two new systems are coming to buses in the Victoria region this spring: an on-board automated announcement program and a vehicle locator.

Once installed, the on-board announcement upgrades will start listing off the bus’ next stop, and will appear both audibly and visually for those who are hearing or sight impaired.

Some transit users may have already noticed the new announcement system, as it’s already being installed in some of Victoria’s buses.

“We have over 200 busses in our fleet in Victoria so they’re going through the process of installing the technology,” Jonathan Dyck, BC Transit’s Communications Manager told Victoria Buzz.

The new stop displays will eventually replace all existing announcement mechanisms in Victoria’s fleet.

Meanwhile, BC Transit also plans to add its new NextRide Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) technology to buses this spring.

NextRide will let commuters check the location of their bus and its predicted arrival time at their stop in real-time. The system will be hosted on a dedicated website, allowing transit riders to check bus details on any device that can connect to the internet.

NextRide technology was first launched on the island in May 2018 in Comox Valley and Nanaimo. Several community’s on the mainland also received it last year, including Whistler, Squamish, Kamloops, and Kelowna.

The tracking service will be added to Victoria buses after all 200 of them have been outfitted with the new announcement systems.

“We’re excited about it,” said Dyck. “We know that customers are excited about it too.”

For more information on the upgrades you can visit BC Transit’s website here.

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