Location: Niterói | Brasil
Project: The Smart BHLS Transoceânica Corridor
Designer: Indio Da Costa A.U.D.T.
The Smart BHLS Transoceânica Corridor in Niterói is certainly one of the most advanced urban bus corridors recently implemented in the world. The 2018 public tender won by Metalco was the first in Brazil to require a connected and smart bus corridor, an open platform design, low deck buses designed not only to serve the corridor but also to easily merge into the city bus network. 50% of the bus fleet is expected to be electric and the City of Niterói has the ambition to be the first to present a successor of the BRT corridors, widely used in South America after the 1974 pioneering mobility project in Curitiba.
The open platform design
The Smart BHLS Transoceânica Corridor open platform design makes it harmoniously integrated in the city landscape. Transparency is a key element. Low boarding platforms offer straight access to low deck BHLS buses allowing easy transit of passengers, wheelchairs and trolleys while ticketing and passenger monitoring are completely electronic. The BHLS Transoceânica buses have doors on both sides, therefore they are able to serve the express corridor stations and the regular bus stops in the city merging express and local bus lines.
The design details
Niterói is the city to which Oscar Niemeyer (the famous Brazilian architect, master of sculptured concrete structures) devoted most of his last works before he died. The Transoceanica shelters, benches, litterbins and bike racks were all designed using the latest possibilities of fine moulded concrete, carefully chosen to compose the city’s urban design landscape. The Y shaped inclined concrete pillars, the long benches, the patterned backrests, the long orange graphic communication strips on the top of the continuous glass wall, it all conveys a clean, subtle but strong and contemporary identity to the platforms and shelters.
Careful attention was given to the platform lighting quality and effect. Indirect LED lighting is part of the design concept for the shelters’ roofs creating a double line that splits the volume in two halves. Every handrail has an integrated downlighting system highlighting the platforms’ entrances while offering safety and comfort to passengers.
The SmartMobility System
The smartmobility connected system requires every bus to be connected to the shelters’ wayfinding system allowing passengers to have real time information, not only through the 30 large format widescreens and 30 message panels integrated to the platforms and shelters, but also mirrored to their mobile phones through a specific public mobility app. The system is now able to show real time bus positioning, arrival/departing schedules, local maps and city information. Further steps shall include ticketing (directly from each one’s mobile app), pay per kilometer fare (instead of a flat bus fare) and complete passenger monitoring which will help local authorities to enhance and improve the corridor bus service, optimizing frequency and headway to real time needs. Intermodal integration will also be welcome in the near future, turning Niterói into a continuously smarter city.
Free WiFi is available to all the passengers on the platforms.
Security cameras and loudspeakers in each of the platforms are connected to the city’s central monitoring and control station.
The smart waste collection network
Dustbins are prepared for a smart waste collection network. Small sensors integrated to the top arch of each of the dustbins can alert the waste collection city service when each bin is full optimizing the waste collection process. Smoke sensors will also alert authorities in case of fire inside bins.
The bicycle integration
Considering the wide use of bicycles in the Transoceanica area, every BHLS platform offers public bike racks encouraging passengers to use their own bikes for the last mile between the bus stop and their final destinations.