Montreal, QC/Canada

Improved operations control and real-time passenger information features allow for higher service quality

Public transport that attracts passengers is all about a positive customer experience. In the age of digitalization, passengers’ requirements have changed dramatically. They expect smart mobility offerings and accessible real-time information. As an ambitious public transport provider, the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) responded to these demands by setting up a sophisticated operations control and integrated real-time passenger information system. The project called iBUS is a direct initiative in Montreal’s mission to become a Smart City.

Project at a glance


km² operating area




million passengers per year


daytime service lines


nighttime service lines

The task

To meet the expectations of today’s passengers, Société de transport de Montréal (STM), the provider of public transport services for Montreal, decided for the implementation of an ITS project called iBUS. The project aims to deliver updated passenger information at all times. Adjustments to the schedule, caused for example by service disruptions, become public in real time to allow riders to make the best decision while en route. Of course, reliable information is also available before the trip. Further important goals of STM were to improve punctuality and regularity of the bus service, as well as provide greater safety aboard buses.


The solution

At the core of the system is INIT’s Intermodal Transport Control System, MOBILE-ITCS. 27 workstations situated between two control centers – a primary control center and an emergency control center – allow STM to efficiently manage operations within the city of Montreal. STM will utilize intelligent planning software from INIT for reliable data provisioning, as well as a workflow and incident management solution. 

Automated route data detection software will deliver more accurate stop positions, while a database-supported device management system will improve data supply and simplify the monitoring of operational devices. Mass data is transferred by WLAN. A digital P25 radio system set up in three different locations is used for voice radio. The subcontractor Harris Canada Systems Inc. supplies the radio systems for INIT, the general contractor on this project. The INIT Voice-over-Cellular solution (VoIP via mobil phone network) is implemented for fallback scenarios.

Scope of the project

  • 1,900 vehicles
  • 2 control centers
  • 27 workstations
  • 90 passenger information displays
  • Intermodal Transport Control System
  • Automatic Passenger Counting system
  • Incident management
  • Workflow management
  • 1 central hub for schedule and RTPI information
  • Real-time Passenger Information (RTPI) via stopdisplay, internet, apps and on-board the buses

The conclusion

With the iBUS project, STM has improved their operational efficiency and service quality considerably. Dispatchers receive all information to keep the service on time and running smoothly. Drivers are supported by the on-board computer that provides navigation assistance. And passengers are always in the know about the next bus, delays and travel alternatives – at home, on the road, at the stop and on-board the buses. Overall, all these improvements add up to higher quality service offerings.

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