train arrival sign

photo by MBTA

Those digital signs at Newton T stations on the Riverside branch may soon be doing more than flashing PSAs and informing us about service outages in Malden. Steve Annear of Boston Magazine reports that countdown signs in Newton could provide next train info by January. H/T John Pelletier!

Similar services have been available for buses and heavy-rail for over a year. The Green Line, due to its antiquated infrastructure, was left out of those plans entirely at first, then promised for 2015. One hopes that this new service will provide the MBTA, not just its riders, improved abilities to track its equipment.

For buses, real-time updates can be a real game-changer. The NextBus site makes taking the MBTA bus much more attractive, especially in Newton where service is infrequent. It’s also great for for parents to track their kids’ ride to or from school.

NextBus site

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