Transit Community Spotlight Project (Montgomery County)

Transit Community Spotlight Project (Montgomery County)


The Community Spotlight Project will explore the re-imagination of common, public infrastructure as a platform for sensing and service delivery across domains. Infrastructure that was traditionally only leveraged in one public sector domain (such as transit/transportation, law enforcement, or libraries) will used as a platform for multiple domains.

The first phase of this project is the Transit Community Spotlight Project. It will look at existing public transit assets in Montgomery County, Maryland. Later phases will look at water, sanitation, and safety assets.


– Collaboration across sectors to maximize potential use of existing public assets
– Overcoming pushback from established public-sector transportation through clear value-proposition over existing solutions
– Integration of new technologies with existing hardware to create and evaluate emerging protocols for vehicle-to-infrastructure and vehicle-to-vehicle communications as outlined by USDOT objectives

Major Requirements:

– Collaborate with the County’s Department of Transportation, Ride-On Buses, and other transit experts to identify potential existing transit assets that would be good for #IoT
– Engage #IoT experts to develop innovative ways to integrate #IoT solutions into existing transit assets to address diverse County stakeholder needs
– Pilot #IoT solutions in County transit assets
– Measure ongoing success of the program and adapt program as necessary

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs):

Increased number of bus stops and other transit assets with integrated #IoT Technology
– Other KPIs to be determined based on scope of #IoT integrated into assets (e.g., pothole detection leading to faster repairs)

Measurement Methods:

– Recording assets that have #IoT integration
– Variable depending on scope of KPIs


– Vehicle-to-infrastructure communications must be standardized and secure in order to maintain citizen trust in wireless preemption of motor-vehicles
– Cyber-physical sensors for ridership engagement and improvement of public-transportation will utilize existing 802.11, 802.15, and cellular standards, and MQTT transmission protocol

Replicability, Scalability, and Sustainability:

– Bus- and bus-stop- as-a-platform allows for each physical location to act as a gateway for communications to the cloud (scalability, replicability).
– Clear value-proposition of increased ridership with established and robust hardware ensures sustainability

Project Impacts:

– Improving transit experience for transit riders
– Increase value and usefulness of existing assets previously considered single-use
– Improve rider safety
– Reduce maintenance costs and environmental impact of fleet
– Help Montgomery County become a smarter county through increased data collection via existing and underutilized assets in the county

Demonstration/Deployment Phases: Describe what proposed project pilot/ demonstration (Phase I) and deployment (Phase II) will look like.

Phase I Pilot/Demonstration Sept 2016:

– Network infrastructure developed
– Sensors deployed to select transit assets

Phase II Deployment June 2017:

Project milestone


Idea Complete
Prototype Complete
In Development