NextGUTS, a new feature on the Georgetown mobile application that tracks Georgetown University Transportation Service buses, is set to debut April 15.
The service will offer real-time updates and GPS locations for all GUTS buses, which include recently introduced late-night shuttles to and from Adams Morgan and Dupont Circle. NextGUTS was designed by University Facilities and University Information Services.
Vice President for Planning and Facilities Management Robin Morey said that the idea was conceived based on input from focus groups, surveys and Georgetown residents. According to Morey, the app will allow users to maximize their time and plan commutes with greater accuracy.
To calculate bus arrival times, the app uses historic data of GUTS routes from November 2012 onward, accounting for traffic, red lights and rush-hour trends. Unusual situations like motorcades and bridge closings are expected to add to the margin of error, but Mobile Program Manager Lee Emmertexpects the application’s accuracy is expected to improve over time.
Morey said that NextGUTS will help the university to ensure that buses run on the correct routes and adhere to revised routes designed to avoid residential neighborhoods when possible.
Deputy Chief Information Officer Judd Nicholson said that the popularity of the transit feature on the Georgetown mobile app, launched last year, was a driving factor in the creation of NextGUTS.
Emmert expects that NextGUTS would attract more users to the mobile app, which now has more than 10,000 users across its platforms. Emmert stressed the importance of the app and said the university would continue seeking feedback.
Students have already expressed interested in the new feature, including Bo Julie Crowley (COL ’15).
“I take GUTS now for my internship, and buses come infrequently to the Rosslyn station since there’s traffic on the Key Bridge,” Crowley said. “It’d be nice to know if there’s a wait or if I should hurry up to catch the next one.”