The city of Gothenburg was in search of electromobility solutions. They needed to combine automotive and electrical renewable energy to introduce an eco-friendly public transport, connecting the final users to the innovative solution.
ElectriCity was a project funded by the region of Västra Götaland, Sweden in co-operation between organizations like Cybercom, Chalmers, Ericsson, Icomera, Interactive Swedish ICT, Keolis. The main goal was to create an open platform for sustainable public transport and future innovation projects. In years 2015-2018 there were introduced 3 completely electric-powered busses and 12 buses running 80% on electrical power. The vehicles on route 55 were noiseless and picked up the passengers both indoors and outdoors, providing them with wireless services.
What’s so unique about this project?
The project can be seen both as a test arena for new products and services targeting the public transportation sector as well as a source of inspiration and motivation for the future smart city of Gothenburg. To be able to create complete end-to-end automotive solutions it required efficient collaboration between technology and data providers, system integrators, end users and public authorities. It brought together industry, research and society to develop, test and demonstrate new, sustainable solutions. It also showed how in the connected world people feel much better, safer as they are informed continuously by having access to information like for example when the bus is going to arrive or basic data about travel conditions (speed, duration, etc.).
The project was complex and required a special platform to connect the services with the public. Providing the information on the new bus lines, the stops, charging stations was one of the purposes of the platform. Our role was to build an API – application programming interfaces to provide static information (like technical specifications, pictures) as well as real-time information like for example the location of the bus, inside temperature etc. to the users. Thanks to the platform it was possible to enable and facilitate internal and external development of other services connected to the ElectriCity project. The project was launched on Sept 18 2015.
We were involved in building the infrastructure from scratch and establish fundaments to develop further services connected to public transport. The most challenging part regarded the ways of how to get the data from the buses to the final user. Establishing the agreement on the exact content for the platform and its scope was also time-consuming as we were working with 7 other organizations and didn’t have the figure of a product owner. Communication in such a set-up doesn’t work in a 1 to 1 scale. Therefore, the complexity and synchronization were additional difficulties on this project.
Our highly qualified specialists working in Cross-Functional Teams (XFT), skilled in project management, Java and Cloud solutions, in one year, managed to develop the platform and run it for 3 consecutive years with a budget around 250k Euro.
Bringing up the knowledge from different technological areas, combining it with our partners’ perspective made this project a great success. During the cooperation, we learned how to collaborate in a “patchwork” with other organizations. We’re especially proud of being able to unite connectivity, innovation and sustainability in one, fulfilling our mission to improve the world. At the same time, we were able to broaden our knowledge and experience in the automotive area, so now we can provide our further clients with even better know-how. At the same time, the city of Gothenburg could test the sustainable public transport and learn about its advantages for future solutions.
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About the Author: Jan Matulewicz
He has been associated with the IT industry in various roles since 2004. Technical documentation specialist, tester, java developer, team leader, project manager, line manager, product owner and finally – the Head of Software House. He is a graduate of Center of International Education at the Lodz University of Technology and Executive MBA at the University of Lodz.
He’s an enthusiast of technology in the service of humanity, information humanism and engineering of miracles. An occasional lecturer and personal development coach. He supports the theory of the world of good, work as a natural human need and the enrichment of societies.