SWAT Mobility Launches Trial to Revise Kitakyushu City Bus Routes Schedules

Published on:
October 22, 2021
To Promote the Digital Transformation of Kitakyushu City Transportation Through The “Startup SDGs Innovation Trial Project”

SWAT Mobility Pte. Ltd. (SWAT Mobility), a Singapore-based mobility startup, is selected for the “Startup SDGs Innovation Trial Project” in Kitakyushu city, Japan. Through this project, SWAT Mobility will analyse the boarding and alighting data and propose revisions to the bus route schedules for the Kitakyushu city bus. This will allow SWAT Mobility to contribute to the "Sustainable City Development" as part of the realisation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the future of Kitakyushu City.  

After the trial is completed, SWAT Mobility will introduce a system that analyses boarding and alighting data and proposes optimal revisions to route schedules to bus operators nationwide, following its existing on-demand application.

Issues Faced by Local Shared Bus Operators

In Japan, almost 90% of local shared bus operators (excluding metropolitan areas)* are experiencing a deficit due to the overall decline in the number of shared bus users, resulting from a decline in birthrate, aging society as well as population outflow in the rural areas.

Since the profitability of running shared bus services is predicted to decline further due to the pandemic, it is necessary to digitally transform the regional transportation, utilising data on boarding and alighting effectively to maintain optimal bus routes and efficient operations.

Kitakyushu city bus service typically revises its bus routes schedules approximately once every two years. However, the schedule revisions took many man-hours, heavily relying on the experience of the person-in-charge. To improve efficiency, there is a need use a digital system to run statistical analysis on boarding and alighting data to revise bus schedules.

Proposed optimal schedule that reduces man-hours in schedule revisions
Sample analysis on bus station utility
Sample analysis on hourly number of passengers

SWAT Mobility’s data scientists have conducted more than 100 cases of traffic analysis with data on boarding and alighting for on-demand transportation simulations in 7 countries. The company will propose an optimal operation schedule that takes various factors into consideration such as connections with other transportation, the number of cars and crew members, etc. With the data analysis and the proposed routing schedule, it is estimated that approximately one third of the working man-hours can be reduced. In addition, the system using Zenrin road network allows detailed analysis assuming the driving of a large bus and taking into consideration the intricate narrow roads unique to Japan and one-way / time zone regulations.

SWAT Mobility will continue to provide solutions using technology to solve various issues related to “movement" for consumers to experience optimal and efficient transport.

*Based on the “2019 Profitability on Bus Operations” by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism