Lancashire County Council is to roll out the use of the Alchera Pinch Point Analysis Tool across the junctions of existing bus routes within its borders.
This follows the completion of a trial across 59 junctions in the east of the county, and is aimed at helping local bus operators develop plans to improve the reliability of their services.
The tool is a machine learning application that identifies and helps to lessen the impact of bus pinch points on the network. It uses Alchera’s cloud based Alpha software platform to take in data from several sources – including the Bus Open Data System and existing transport sensors – and provide real time and predictive data on vehicle and pedestrian movements.
Alchera said this can be used for tasks such as identifying the need for interventions at specific junctions. The tool can also be used in estimating the economic impact of inefficient junctions.
Need for evidence
Martin Porter, principle engineer (network management) for Lancashire, said: “Improving the performance of the bus network is a top priority for LCC. We know there are issues at some junctions across the network but we need evidence - objective data - to back up our assumptions so we can secure the government funding we need to make improvements.
“We also need to be able to measure the interventions to see how well they are working and avoid similar issues in the future. Alchera gives us the capability to do that in real time.”