July 2019

Phase Two of the Integrated and Smart Travel (IST) programme – ‘Customer information, collaboration and innovation’ – will extend the same open-source data and information experience currently enjoyed by rail passengers to bus and tram journeys. It is the information enhancement the industry has been waiting for, bringing together best practice and innovation from across the sector and delivering joined up travel solutions. 

Find out more about the latest developments in the delivery of Phase Two below. 

Open Data Hub - now in development 

Phase Two’s Open Data Hub is now in the first stage of delivery. It is being developed by mobility technology provider, Trapeze Group UK, who are working in partnership with TransportAPI. 

The initial design workshop with our LTA partners is scheduled for later this week.

Once live, the Hub will provide a definitive open-source of public transport fares information and disruption messaging. It will help fix what is currently a fragmented, largely private data landscape that makes planning how to get from point A to B - and knowing how much you will be charged for this journey - much more difficult than it should be for passengers travelling across the region. 

The Open Data Hub is due to go live, with the first sets of disruption messaging data available to developers, by March 2020. 

Disruptions Messaging Tool produces first dummy data 

IST’s proposed Disruption Messaging Tool will help transport authorities share information with passengers about planned and unplanned disruptions affecting local services.  

We are continuing to work closely with our supplier, Ito World, to develop the solution. This has included several productive design and testing workshops with TfN’s LTA partners who will be the primary users of the tool. The first sets of ‘dummy’ disruptions data – fully processed through the tool and outputted in SIRI SX format – will soon be available for the LTAs and data-developers to test and integrate into their journey planning apps and websites. 

Supplier selected for Fares Data Build Tool 

We are pleased to confirm that we have now selected a preferred supplier and are in final contract negotiations for our Fares Data Build Tool. 

The tool is being developed in partnership between Transport for the North, the Department for Transport’s Bus Open Data programme, Traveline and the preferred supplier. The proposed solution will collate bus fare information and export it into the emerging UK NeTEx format – the new technical standard for this type of data. 

The tool will help operators comply with new government requirements to make bus fare information openly available for passengers. 

We are now working to secure a group of bus operators and local transport authorities to partake in 'Alpha phase' development and testing of the tool (due to begin in September). Any interested operators should get in touch. 

Engaging with the Open Data Community

TfN’s ambition is to facilitate better, open public transport information across the North of England. Rather than provide our own journey planning app, we want to create the data infrastructure - via our Open Data Hub and other smart tools - that will enable existing providers to maximise their service offer to customers and encourage innovation across the Open Data Community.  

This strategy has required us to connect and engage with the best public transport data providers in the business, such as Google, Moovit and Passenger. TfN are excited by the potential in these growing relationships. We look forward to sharing more information about this work the coming months.  

‘Touch On, Touch Off’ Innovation trials 

Bus operator Transdev Blazefield are currently running TfN-funded pilot trials on live bus routes across Yorkshire, as part of Phase Two’s Innovation initiative.  

The trials aim to test the capabilities of different contactless fare-capping technology. Specifically, they are investigating the effectiveness of using single vs. dual card readers as mechanism for recording customer’s ‘tap’ records. These are created by customers touching on with their contactless bank card as they board the bus and touching off when they disembark.  The trials will provide insight on the technical, operational and commercial effectiveness of the different solutions, as well as the impact on customer behaviour. 

Learnings from the Innovation initiative will help enhance and de-risk IST plans for the delivery of an account-based ticketing system for multi-modal, multi-operator journeys across the North. 

Stay in the loop with IST 

We want to make sure all our partners and stakeholders are kept in the know about the latest developments in IST. We would encourage you to share this newsletter with your colleagues. If anyone would like to be added to our mailing list, they should email with their contact details. 

Our mailing address is:
Transport for the North
Grace Street
Leeds, LS1 2RP

Email the Integrated and Smart Travel team at:

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Transport for the North IST · 4 PIcadilly Place · Manchester, Greater Manchester M1 3BN · United Kingdom

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