Indoor Navigation at Penn Station
New York Penn Station serves more than 650,000 travelers each day, making it one of the busiest transportation hubs worldwide. Let’s put that in to perspective: that is more passengers than all of the NYC airports combined.
Penn Station serves as the Amtrak transportation hub for commuters from Boston, Philadelphia and Washington DC, known as the Northeast Corridor, and long-distance travelers whose destinations might include Chicago, Miami, and New Orleans.
Penn Station sits underneath Madison Square Garden, and on event days, is even more crowded. It is known for being one of the most confusing and hard to navigate stations, as it also serves Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit passengers, as well as the 1,2,3 and A,C,E Subway lines. To counter this, Amtrak, the US national railroad company who owns Penn Station, launched the FindYourWay app to help passengers navigate the station with ease. It was designed by Zyter™ based on its intelligent connectivity platform, with indoo.rs technology.
With the FindYourWay app, passengers no longer have to worry about finding the right platform, missing their train or finding a barrier-free route to their destination. Now, it is all just a click away. All they have to do is consult the app, select their train, and be directly navigated to their train.
The technical details
For the app, Zyter™ placed over 400 BLE beacons in Penn Station as part of creating the seamless navigation experience that indoo.rs is known for. This enables an accurate position to be estimated, and the routes to be calculated quickly.
FindYourWay also leverages the sensors on passenger phones to navigate even without a data connection, with no loss in the quality and accuracy.
“This of course was a great project. Dealing with that much foot traffic would be daunting without a robust technology and great partners. Working with Amtrak was extremely easy and we feel that we have created an experience that will benefit both passengers and Amtrak alike,” said Bernd Gruber President indoo.rs.
“From first-time visitors to veteran travelers, everyone can benefit from downloading FindYourWay and experiencing the new, digital-friendly New York Penn Station,” said Stephen Gardner, Amtrak’s Chief Commerical Officer. “FindYourWay is more than just an interactive platform; it can also help prevent overcrowding in the station, delivering a measure of customer safety that other communication products and forms of travel cannot provide.”
Read all about the app on the Amtrak blog
What does the App look like
Press about FindYourWay
The NY Times have reported about it as well.
The FindYourWay app is available for Android and iOS for free, download it now:
More updates and details are following soon, so stay tuned!