Melbourne SmartBus Operational Planning

Provided specialist operations planning and implementation support, as well as designing information systems, for the Department of Transport’s SmartBus team

Parked Bus

Client: Victorian Department of Transport

Project Description

Smartbus

Phillip Boyle & Associates provided specialist operations planning and implementation support, as well as designing information systems, for the Department of Transport’s SmartBus team. The project involved a range of SmartBus routes across Melbourne, including the ‘Yellow Orbital’ (Route 901) airport extension and ‘Green Orbital’ (Route 902) services.

Highlights

Routes 901 and 902 were successfully implemented in 2010 and have achieved high levels of efficiency and patronage. The Green Orbital Implementation Team received the Industry Achiever Award at the 2010 BusVic Industry Awards.

Scope of Works

Key Tasks

The main tasks for routes 901 and 902 included:

  • Developing run times, based on existing route operations, and incorporating changed traffic conditions
  • Developing the operating timetable
  • Creating vehicle blocks and driver shifts
  • Creating stop-specific timetables for real-time information
  • Producing a range of information tools to integrate with downstream systems (e.g. the Metlink timetable system, vehicle monitoring systems, real-time information systems).

Key Challenges

The operations planning task presented Phillip Boyle & Associates with a number of challenges as the new routes had distinctive features, including:

  • New sections and substantial new priority treatments – running times estimations were therefore complex
  • Extremely long one-way route sections (3–4 hours in each direction)
  • Operations from three depots, each run by a different operator with unique rules and operating requirements.
Smart Bus Map
SmartBus map (from the Victorian Transport Plan)
Smartbus Bus
Route 900 SmartBus