Bus shelters across Croydon will be upgraded with high-tech replacements that will give travel updates, writes Theo Burman.
The new shelters will monitor noise and footfall, while also providing free public Wi-Fi hotspots.
The screens will also display emergency messages and travel information relevant to each specific location.
The shelters have been designed “with safety and well-being in mind” and will feature cameras, LED edge lighting, updated changes in bus timetables and accessibility improvements for people with disabilities.
The council estimates that digital advertising on the screens at these shelters will provide more than £6.75m in revenue.
The new shelters are part of a wider plan to develop more environmentally-friendly public services. They will be equipped with sensors designed to monitor air quality across Croydon.
The replacements will be managed by VALO Smart City UK LTD, who have initiated a 10-year contract with Croydon council.
Croydon will be the first borough in the country to benefit from this partnership.
Councillor Muhammad Ali, a cabinet member for sustainable Croydon, said: “I am very excited about the arrival of these smart bus shelters which will make residents’ travel experiences more enjoyable, informative and safer.
“The smart city sensors will also act as a great tool in our continued mission to become a greener, more sustainable borough.
Our partnership with innovators VALO will be our latest step towards Croydon becoming not only a digital council but the first truly connected smart borough which uses technology to enhance and transform the lives of our residents for the better.”
Isaac H Sutton, chief executive of VALO Smart City, said: “Our bus shelters and digital advertising boards will create beautiful new street furniture and a brand new level of digital connectivity for the borough.
“Croydon is committed to digital innovation and that is why it has selected VALO.”
Construction on the new shelters is expected to start in March 2022.
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