A reader left this question on the Spotted Hotline:

“Hello, I’m calling to complain about campus shuttle system. I’ve been waiting for 10 minutes, but the bus hasn’t shown up. I was wondering if there could be some sort of system to know when the shuttle is coming because your phone would tell you and you could follow the buses on a map.”

Well, I’ve got some good news: UCLA Transportation will soon be launching NextBus, which will provide real-time bus arrival information to riders on the Campus Express, Wilshire Express, Northwest Shuttle, and University Apartment routes. Passengers will be able to view the bus arrival time and actual bus location with any web-enabled device.

When NextBus goes live, riders will be able to see the approximate location of a campus shuttle bus by computer or a web-enabled phone. This screenshot was taken last October, so things will probably look VERY different when UCLA Transportation's system goes live.

You can access information if you’re already at the bus stop by calling or texting a phone number (still TBD) and entering the bus stop number listed at each bus stop.

You may have already seen this type of technology deployed by other transit systems. Metro, for instance, offers Rapid on the Cell (www.rapidbus.net), which provides arrival times for buses in its 7-series (i.e. 720 on Wilshire; 761 on Van Nuys Boulevard):

From The LA Subway Blog – Transportation, Real Estate, and the Future of Los Angeles

LADOT is beta-testing the same thing as UCLA on its Downtown Dash routes (www.ddash.org):

*Where* is the Dash Bus? Screenshot taken at ddash.org on March 2, 2010.

*When* is the next Dash bus coming? Screenshot taken March 2, 2010 from ddash.org.

The NextBus system is still being tested internally at UCLA Transportation, so bookmark Be A Green Commuter or keep in touch with us by subscribing to our RSS feed for more details as they emerge.

Also, as always, feel free to post questions in the comments section.