What's Orbita Line?
Orbita Line is a mobile-centric solution for low- and medium-income families who need to travel around the city. It is a low-priced public bus service with no timetable. Passengers only need a simple phone without any internet connection to order a bus. The bus picks up passengers in 15 minutes from the chosen bus stop. Unlike public bus service or DRT, Orbita Line is a massive, cost-effective, ICT-powered dispatcherless public transportation network with a sustainable business model and a strong social impact.
The problem of the modern public transportation is that it is enormously expensive to provide at least a modest quality of service. The fares continue to rise in developed countries and low-income families find it more and more restrictive to use mass transit. The cities in the developing world can not afford to implement integrated public transportation systems and just leave the market to unregulated share taxis, which are a big pain for passengers.
What is wrong with the public bus service for passengers?
Any passenger who rides a bus at least a few times a week is aware of all those issues:
- Any bus can be late.
- Any bus can be so late, that you miss your connection to another line.
- Any bus can be overcrowded.
- Bus fares are not that cheap nowadays.
- Waiting at a bus stop when the weather is cold is not the most pleasant experience.
- Connections can be inconvenient.
- Unless a passenger rides the same route every day, routes/lines are not easy to memorize.
- The public transit maps are not easy to understand for spontaneous trips. "How do I get there now? What connections should I make?" - it can be hard to extract this information from the map.
What is wrong with conventional buses for municipalities?
Almost all the city municipalities that have some kind of public urban bus system have to deal with the following issues to provide their citizens with public transportation:
- The city, i.e. the taxpayers have to pay for it. Conventional public transportation is not economically self-sustainable and along with collecting fares from passengers, public transit has to rely on taxpayers' money to operate.
- As a part of city's infrastructure, public transportation is very expensive. The municipality has to financially support the transportation agency so that it can pay the salaries, maintain buses and purchases new buses.
- Higher quality public transit is even more expensive. As a small- or medium-sized city municipality, you can not afford to improve the quality of your city's public transit system, because it requires more buses and more drivers, which cost even more to sustain.
- Some of your city's boroughs are excluded from public transit. Since public transportation systems are expensive to operate, your city has a public transportation network which connects some neighborhoods to the city center, but not all of them. Also, due to budget issues, most of the neighborhoods are poorly served and may be not connected to each other with sufficiently frequent (each 15 minutes) lines.
What is wrong with share taxis for passengers?
Share taxis are probably the worst type of public transportation ever created. A passenger who rides share taxis regularly has to experience the following problems:
- There is no timetable. A sharetaxi usually departs from the start station only when the bus is full of passengers.
- There is no guaranteed service availability.
- There is no guaranteed capacity. An overcrowded share taxi can just pass by the bus stop and leave you there.
- There is no guaranteed trip duration. A share taxi driver can stop it to wait for more passengers or he can deviate from the route to search for more passengers. Anyway, your trip becomes longer.
- There is no full city coverage. Often, to get from one neighborhood to another a passenger has to travel the city center (downtown) which dramatically increases the trip length.
- There are no connections.
- There is no integrated fare system.
- Passengers have to pay the exact ticket price in cash, since often drivers have no change.
- Unprofessional drivers without a proper license are common.
- It is common that passengers are not covered by any insurance.
What is wrong with share taxis for municipalities?
Share taxis is a type of public transit that can do more harm than good to a city. They are very unfriendly both to passengers and motorists. Although they do not cost anything to the city municipality and to the tax payers, the quality of service that they provide is very low. Any city can experience the negative impact of share taxis due to the following:
- Share taxis do not serve the actual passenger demand. Instead they try to gain the maximal profits by working at the peak hours and at the most popular destinations. Those passengers who happen to travel in no-peak times to less popular destinations are essentially excluded from accessing the city.
- All share taxis go to the city center. They do not serve routes between other boroughs of the city, because they chase the most popular and profitable routes which mostly end in downtown.
- With share taxis your city has no integrated public transportation system. Since most of the share taxis serve the most profitable routes, many boroughs are not served by any transportation options which makes them bad neighborhoods: nobody wants to live there and no new businesses establish themselves there.
- No integration means no connections, no connections mean no urban mobility. Since the share taxis are not an integrated transportation system, all people who live in your city and who need to travel two or more routes are out of luck. Those passengers has two pay a double fare which makes such trips prohibitively expensive for many if taken daily. Moreover, those passengers have to rely on pure luck and just hope that when they transfer from the first share taxi there would be second one; usually it is not, because share taxis are not synchronized in time anyhow.
- Share taxis' drivers work whenever they want to. For example, they do not care about serving passengers in the evening time, because they collect their profits during peak hours and then just leave the line.
- Share taxis cause traffic jams. A share taxi is not a high passenger capacity vehicle compared to bus, so usually a city that has share taxis has many of them. They occupy a lot of space on the road and thus cause traffic congestion. It becomes even worse when share taxi drivers aggressively compete for passengers and violate speed limits which can lead to accidents.
- Share taxis often employ unprofessional drivers. Share taxis' goal is profit first and foremost and therefore their drivers often drive aggressively and do not treat passengers well. As a result, the city experiences a negative impact on many levels: social, traffic, safety and infrastructure level.
- Share taxis' low quality service pushes away many potential customers. As a result they become a 'transportational ghetto' which is used only by low-income people. The higher income citizens have to rely on cars which imposes more stress on city's roads infrastructure and increases traffic congestion.
- Share taxis drive away investors from your city. Even if your city has nice roads, vibrant communities and growing business opportunities any investor can be disappointed by the fact that people get around the city by a dirty, inconvenient and unsafe public transportation system that was invented in USA more than 100 years ago.
Why is Orbita Line better for passengers?
As a passenger you can get a much better experience with Orbita Line than with a conventional bus or a share taxi. Orbita Line has many great advantages over the public transportation you are used to:
- It is affordable. Orbita Lines fares are the same or lower than that of the public transportation in your city.
- It is even more affordable, because the connections are free. You pay for the whole trip and it does not matter how many times you transfer, the price stays the same.
- No waiting for the bus. You do not need to stand and wait at a bus stop. Instead, you summon a bus with your phone and go to the bus stop only when it is ready to pick you up.
- Orbita Line is never late. When you summon an Orbita Line bus by phone, we guarantee that it will arrive in 15 minutes, otherwise your trip is free.
- Orbita Line's bus stops (stations) are everywhere. We serve the whole city, so that you can go to and from any area of the city without worries.
- You are a very important customer. Orbita Line guarantees that a bus will pick you up even if you are a single passenger requesting a bus to the bus stop of your choice.
- Even grandma can use it. You can summon a bus with by calling the Orbita Line toll-free number of via our iPhone/Android app.
- You will never be late. Orbita Line guarantees that your trip in total will be no longer than 25 minutes.
- No crowds in the bus. Orbita Line guarantees that when you summon a bus by phone there will always be an available place for you.
- Never miss a connection again. Orbita Line's satellite-driven ICT system guarantees that when you transfer, the transfer will be guaranteed and the transfer duration will be minimal.
- Arrival information screens at bus stops? You do not need them with Orbita Line, since you go to the bus stop only when it notifies you to do so and when the bus is ready to pick you up.
- Forget about plotting your route and planning connections. Orbita Lines does all that work for you - you can just ride the bus and relax. If Orbita Line thinks you need to transfer to another bus, it will tell you.
- No need to prepare the exact cash amount to pay the fare. Your payment is made automatically when you order an Orbita Line bus by phone.
- No need to carry a ticket smartcard around. When you summon an Orbit Line bus by phone, your account is charged with a fare automatically.
- No need to memorize routes and lines numbers. Orbita Line has no line numbers, it just gets you from A to B by your request.
- No need to read public transit maps. Just call Orbita Line instead and tell it where you want to go. It will look up the map for you.
- Properly licensed drivers make sure that you have a pleasant trip. All of our drivers are experienced and have all the required training and licenses.
- You are insured when you travel with Orbita Line. Orbita Line is a service you can trust, because we have a strict safety, security and insuring policy for our passengers.
Why Orbita Line is better for municipalities?
Orbita Line can be much better for the people that live in your city, and it also offers many benefits to the city municipality and improves the overall image of the city:
- Orbita Line does not cost anything to the city. If your city has a Public Service Obligation (PSO) from some transportation agency to provide public transit to the citizens, it costs money to the taxpayers. With Orbita Line your city does not need any PSO contracts; Orbita Line is self sustainable and can operate just on collecting fares from passengers. Just think about all that other useful ways you could spend the city's money, with Orbita Line your city does not need to spend a dime on public transportation.
- Your citizens will be happy. With Orbita Line any person in the city can summon a bus by phone, board it 15 minutes later and get to any bus stop at a low price. It's a heaven of urban mobility.
- Your city will get activity boost. With such an easy way to move around the city as Orbita Line, more people will travel in the city daily to make personal and business visits, find new jobs and opportunities, go shopping and much more.
- No need to terminate any existing contracts or partnerships. Does your city run a PSO contract with some bus company? Or maybe your city has share taxis as public transportation? There is nothing to worry about, Orbita Line can work along with existing public transportation options. The only thing is that most probably most of the passengers will choose Orbita Line as a superior option for urban mobility.
- Your city will get development boost. With Orbita Line all the boroughs of your city will become equally accessible, which will benefit businesses, people and organizations there and give them many opportunities to grow.
- Traffic congestion will decrease. If more people use reliable and comfortable public transportation, where do the cars go? They go off the streets.
- Your can market your city to investors as a 'smart city'. As an innovative mobility solution, Orbita Line will increase your city's productivity and competitiveness which will attract more investors.
Social by Design
Orbita Line is a frugal public transportation service. It enables access to key destinations and services in the city disregarding of the level of income of any individual passenger. In an Orbita Line-enabled city any citizen can afford accessing any of the amenities that are present in the city. There is no need to say anything more than that in regards to Orbita Line's social impact, because if a low-income person can afford to pay for a daily journey to work, university, school, clinic and any other place in the city, that is a life changer.
Along with improving the lives of vast categories of people, Orbita Line can improve the quality of life on a city level. More attractive public spaces, improved road safety, better health, less air and noise pollution, less greenhouse gas emissions and less energy consumption are among the benefits of any good urban bus service that are backed by some strong evidence.
Orbita Line's business model goes even further than providing high-quality public transit at a low cost. As it is described in the Orbita Line White Paper, one of the project's activities is providing free journeys to vulnerable social groups (children, students, pensionaries, physically challenged, etc.). Such a business model has already been proven by some social businesses around the world, for example by the Narayana Health multi-specialty hospital chain in India, which is a Harvard Business School case study. Its hybrid business model charges some users fees to cross-subsidize a free service for those who cannot pay. The super efficiency with which the service is delivered creates the surplus which funds services for those who cannot pay.
Charity-wise Orbita Line is a local economy-friendly aid that lasts and provides value continuously, for an unlimited amount of time and that actually helps local businesses to grow, since it dramatically decreases the transportation costs.
Every city is a Greencity with Orbita Line
Resource-wise, Orbita Line's system continuously optimizes its timetables and lines so, that each and every bus in the system is utilized as much as possible at any given moment. In other words, one of the Orbita Line's system tasks is to make sure that no buses in the system run empty. As a result, the amount of buses needed to serve the same number of passengers is much lower as well as the CO2 emissions level per each travelling passenger/journey is lower with Orbita Line compared to conventional public bus services.
Powered by innovations.
Orbita Post is a high-tech project. It combines an innovative logistics model with industry grade software to allow for cheap same day deliveries inside a city. It is a point-to-point transportation network designed to be powered by IT, software and GNSS from day one. Unlike the traditional postal services, Orbita Post is created to heavily rely on modern technologies such as web API, peer-to-peer networks and global positioning systems. In fact Orbita Post makes point-to-point logistics to be efficient by utilizing a pure engineering approach. In other words, the project does not use the point-to-point logistics model in a usual sense; it transforms the point-to-point logistics model to a powerful transportation network by applying a stack of ICT systems to it.
Our web server API allows us to assure that at any given moment and for any webshop in the city, there is a vehicle that can reach that webshop to collect the customer’s order. Moreover, it is worth noting that our proposal is not just about utilizing ICT-aided logistics innovations, but it is also about ’spreading’ the vehicles around the city evenly and thus cover the urban area efficiently.
Your financial resources can help
Although Orbita Line is designed to finance its growth itself, any external funding like grants or charity would be of a great help to the project.
Your financial resources can help people in developing countries to get mobility and freedom today.
In fact, a rather modest donation can turn a poorly connected city into a 'smart city' where people of any income level have constants access to jobs, education, health care and all the amenities that the city has.
We would be glad to discuss the implementation of first-class public transit in a number of cities that is under our research now, as well as any cities that are high on your priorities list.