Network Rail and Hack Partners launch early industry engagement for intra-station routing API

The Network Rail Research & Development Portfolio has funded a leading UK technology pioneer to make significant improvements for passengers. The new solution, developed by transport system software developer Hack Partners, allows for proactive reporting on the status of lifts and escalators at stations so passengers can better plan their journeys.

The new software application and public Application Programming Interface (API) enables:

  • 3rd party application developers to access lift and escalator live availability and intra-station routing logic for stations across Great Britain
  • App developers, who build transport planning applications can use this API to give passengers the information they need to make it easier for passengers and prevent passengers getting stranded on platforms because lifts and escalators are not working
  • Supported by Network Rail, this technology is a key example of the great strides to improve passenger information in-line with the Great British Railways Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail

Haydon Bartlett-Tasker, the Managing Director of Hack Partners stated: “Hack Partners is putting advanced AI, analytics, and image processing to work for the betterment of transportation systems and we are energised to introduce this new capability in collaboration with Network Rail.”

“Our approach will enable software applications to have real-time status for lifts and escalators at stations across the UK, greatly reducing the number of missed trains and connections for millions of passengers each year. Through our work with Network Rail, we look forward to building on this use case with other breakthrough solutions designed to make the railway better for passengers”

Russell Sweeting-White, Principal Engineer, Technical Authority, Network Rail
said: “Providing passengers with level access information is at the heart of making rail accessible to all, the creation of this real-time lift and escalator live availability information shall enhance the passenger experience, particularly for those with accessibility needs. This exciting next phase shall deliver internal station routing information, unlocking the potential for future automated level access journey planning and re-routing. Network Rail – Putting the Passenger First”

“Network Rail has always cared about the passenger experience and this technology innovation is a key example of how Network Rail is putting passengers first.”

The team at Network Rail and Hack Partners welcome feedback as they develop the API for industry. If you would like to be a beta user please email with the subject “Re-route me”.

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