This project was completed in collaboration with UNSW and as part of a 3-year research program on Responsive Transport Environments funded through the Australian Research Council and industry partners, including Arup and Grimshaw Architects.
The research program investigates low-cost approaches to transport infrastructure expansion through the use of digital information technologies that work in combination with existing hard infrastructures to improve passenger flow through facilities and distribute loads across services by providing useable and novel forms of information to passengers. The vision is to enhance the customer experience while increasing mode-share and revenue performance of public transport, reducing operating costs, energy use and service disruption during periods of upgrade and refurbishment.
Design and prototyping
The interchange prototype is the result of a parallel, iterative design approach: UNSW students developed several ideas for what the physical structure of a transport shelter would look like. The final concept was selected for its modular approach and spatial design that complements the urban environment, and revised and built by project team members.
Students from the University of Sydney designed and prototyped digital screen applications that explored different ways for improving the customer experience while waiting at a transport shelter, as well as providing contextually relevant information. Three applications and a low-resolution LED display application were eventually included in the prototype, and redesigned and implemented by project members.
Two 39-inch screens and one 60-inch screen were incorporated into the physical structure. The LED display was custom-made of 551 RGB LEDs. The user interface for the applications was built with web technology. The sensor input mechanisms were built using Processing. A Microsoft Kinect depth camera was used to enable touch interaction on the displays.
M. Hank Haeusler, Martin Tomitsch, Tim Tompson, Nicole Gardner, Briedy Mahar, Eliot Rosenberg, Rebekah Araullo, Sean Bryen, Oliver Dawson, Soojeong Yoo, Frederik Görtelmeyer, Minshuo Melody Li, Adam Smith, Lachlan Sunderland, and many more.
The prototype was exhibited as part of Sydney Design Week in August 2014.
Tompson, T. and Tomitsch, M. (2014). Understanding public transport design constraints by using mock-ups in stakeholder conversations. In Proceedings of the Participatory Design Conference (PDC'14), ACM.
Tomitsch, M. (2014). The History and Future of Interaction Design in Public Transport Environments. In INTERCHANGING - Future Designs for Responsive Transport Environments, Gardner, N., Mahar, B. and Haeusler, H. (Editors), AADR, Spurbuchverlag.
For more information see the website for the Responsive Transport Environments research program.
Photos by Xavier Ho and Martin Tomitsch.