Rush hour in Tokyo is no joke. If you want to avoid cramming into a sardine-packed car, this new notification system by Tokyo Metro will definitely come in handy. It won't make the crowds disappear, but it should help you to find a bit more space, which is especially welcome during this pandemic age.
The new notification system is featured via video display screens at platform gates along Tokyo Metro lines. Commuters just have to check the screen to see how packed each of the train cars are on the next incoming train. From there, they can choose a less crowded car to enter.
The level of congestion will be ranked on a four-coloured scale (as shown in the image above):
- Blue: available seats
- Green: no available seats but not crowded
- Orange: standing only, slightly crowded
- Red: Very crowded
The new programme uses depth-sensing cameras to update the status of train traffic. So far, the system is being tested on the Tozai line platform at Waseda Station. The trial runs until the end of March 2023. If it is deemed successful, we could be seeing this notification system implemented at more stations around the city.
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