Monday 28th October
9:00am LA Metro Site Visits

In direct partnership with LA Metro, the event opens with a site visit to the operators brand new project – the Crenshaw/LAX Line which is due to open to operations in mid 2020 at a cost of $1.8bn. Leaving the hotel at 9:00am you will have the opportunity to meet your fellow delegates and check out the network developments first hand.

11:30am Registration
12:00pm Networking lunch
1:00pm Welcome address
A regular difficulty for companies is persuading financiers to look at long term benefits rather than just the short term expenditure. Large scale projects that produce equally impressive savings in future years are balked at due to their initial capital or projects that may ultimately increase passenger numbers and therefore revenue are refused as they do not provide a direct benefit to operations. This opening section of the conference looks at the innovative projects and ideas that have made LA Metro one of the nation’s most progressive transit operators and assesses the methods that can be used to increase the likelihood of gaining investment for these types of projects.
1:05pm Keynote: Innovation at LA Metro
• Learn what the latest innovative strategies and techniques are being implemented at LA Metro to improve operations and provide a more reliable and enjoyable service.
• Understand what initiatives are being followed to ensure that public transit is viewed as a more attractive transportation option to increase ridership numbers.
• Examine the methods being used by LA Metro to provide a more effective service through integrating platforms by using a range of different technologies such as the TAP card system.
1:25pm The business case for investing in innovation & new technology
• Analyze how short term capital expenditure on new technologies can result in long term financial savings.
• Understand how the case for investing in innovative technology can differ between passenger and freight services.
• Discuss how a lack of investment in new communications technology may have a detrimental effect and cause the transit industry to fall irreparably behind other modes of transport.
1:40pm Advisory session
1:55pm Financing strategies for digitalizing transit
• Understand how to justify technologies that are considered ‘non-essential’ such as on board Wi-Fi.
• Assess the funding options available to operators concerning both small and large scale investment projects.
• The business case for funding digitalization with tight budgets such as on buses, less regular services or for freight rail.
• Discuss other, more unusual sources for funding such as local businesses that may directly benefit.
2:10pm Panel discussion: “We're going to rebuild our infrastructure, which will become, by the way, second to none, and we will put millions of our people to work as we rebuild it.” President Trump made this quote three years ago – what has changed?
• To what extent has the federal government supported and improved transport infrastructure since the current administration assumed office in January 2017?
• Discuss the extent of funding and specific changes that are required to ensure improvement and achieve the promise of ‘second to none’ in future years?
• Discuss what, if any infrastructure projects and funding is promised in the near future and understand what routes are available to press authorities for funding and the likelihood of this being effective.
2:40pm Networking Coffee break
Now, more so than ever, we live in a world where businesses and the population as a whole relies heavily on digital communication technologies. The capabilities of different applications and software seems endless, even more so with the recent announcement of the 5G network and the latest development in mobile communications. Such advancements create a huge amount of potential for the transportation industry and making use of this could have a significant effect on operations and potentially even save lives, yet risk to the system is also increased with the enhanced reliability on digital connectivity leaving the industry even more open to cyber attacks.
3:10pm Assessing the business case of implementing 5G – what are the new capabilities compared to 4G?
• Discuss the ‘cost vs benefit’ aspect of building and implementing 5G infrastructure.
• Explore the possibilities that 5G provides and the level of improvement when compared to 4G.
• Understand the infrastructure required and possibilities of making use of current infrastructure where available.
3:25pm Educating the benefits of Mission Critical Services
• To what extend can Mission Critical Service technology prevent an operational disaster during unexpected events?
• Understand the crucial role MCS technology can play during an emergency incident.
• Learn how the MCS technology can prioritize certain communications over others during emergencies to ensure the quickest, most efficient response.
3:40pm Advisory session
3:55pm Why having a private LTE underground can potentially save lives
• What is private LTE and how do these systems differ from standard communications and how can they work alongside one another?
• Understand how the use of a private LTE can drastically increase business continuity and immunity from outside threats such as hacking.
• Examine how the software can increase response times and allow for otherwise impossible communications to the extent of savings lives
4:10pm The growing threat of cyber-attacks and the potentially severe effects of an attack occurring
• How has the threat of cyber attacks developed over recent years with the constant modernization of data and technological capabilities?
• In a world that relies heavily on digital assets, how damaging could a severe cyber attack potentially be?
• Smaller scale attacks have already cost millions and endangered lives. Discuss the true vulnerability of the industry and the risk, not only financially, but of lives being lost.
4:25pm Panel discussion: Discuss the potential benefits of new 5G technology whilst understanding how this in turn increases the risk of cyber attacks and the need to adapt accordingly to these risks.
• How can we gain the most out of 5G technology and ensure that the transport industry uses the software to its full potential by becoming safer, more efficient and more effective?
• Despite the growing threat of cyber attacks, how can we use 5G to our advantage to become stronger and more vigilant?
• Discuss the idea of operating both a private LTE and public network to maintain business continuity, safety and become much more equipped to dealing with incidents.
4:55pm Drinks reception

  Tuesday 29th October
8:00am Registration
8:55am Welcome address
The possibility of collecting and interpreting data almost instantly has enabled operators to streamline a range of tasks and instantly recognize areas of success and those that require improvement. From providing automated reports to agencies to enabling direct links to customers, the real-time transmission of information gives companies and customers a live picture that they can act upon without delay.
9:00am Data capture and transmission software
• How can real time data transmission unlock new applications?
• What types of data are required to enhance operations?
• Assess the various forms of data transfer from LTE to public networks
9:15am The importance of standardized performance metrics for reports and analysis
As agencies and other regulatory bodies require more information from operators to assess performance against targets, more operators are looking at potential data collection software to save time and there is an increasingly need to incorporate a standardized metric for this data collected. Discuss how agreeing a standardized metric would bring various parts of an organization together and create a much more reliable data set that allows for comparative analysis across companies in areas such as:
• Performance (including speed & punctuality)
• Emissions
• Customer satisfaction
9:30am Advisory session
9:45am Case study: The use of Bluetooth beacon technology to increase connectivity and safety
• How have Houston METRO implemented Bluetooth beacon technology across the city and how has this had a positive effect on operations from both a technical and customer satisfaction standpoint?
• How has this technology improved safety and increased accessibility?
• Is the Bluetooth beacon technology sustainable from a financial standpoint and do the benefits outweigh these costs?
10:00am Strategies being used to prevent rising track fatalities
There has been a steady increase in fatalities across major cities in the US, not only causing loss of life but also traumatic experiences for those nearby the incident and severely impacting service operations. During this session we examine the links between fatalities and factors such as homelessness and lifestyles and the strategies and technologies being used to effectively reduce occurrences in what is a difficult but important issue to address.
10:15am Panel discussion: Using data to its fullest potential
• Discuss the importance of capturing the right data types and the potential difference that this data could have on operational effectiveness when used intelligently.
• Assess ways to take full advantage of software that enables direct reporting and can save valuable time in administration costs and use significantly less manpower.
• Discuss what partnerships may be possible as a way to fund such software through companies or agencies that may also gain from this information
10:45am Networking coffee break
11:15am Panel discussion: Understanding how to address the skills and gender gaps in what is an aging, male dominated workforce
The transport industry is seeing dramatic changes with the need to respond to growing populations and new contenders in the mobility space with smarter, more efficient, and high capacity services. Without the right skills, digitalization and major infrastructure projects are impossible to implement. The industry needs to modernize to attract a younger, more balanced workforce in the future.
• How are the skills needed for professionals as the industry becomes more digitalized?
• The digital workforce: how can greater connectivity and technologies such as AI & robotics deliver efficiencies and improve safety?
• What is the financial cost to the transit industry of an aging workforce?
• How does a more diverse workforce give you a competitive edge?
• How can railways engage younger people, especially women, to encourage them to join the transport sector?
• What careers are millennials seeking and how can the industry become more aligned to this?
• What are the opportunities for working with schools and universities?
The roundtable sessions promote niche and open discussion amongst delegates. The conference hall will be divided into zones, each themed around a different challenge. Delegates can choose which zone they would like to join and a moderator will lead the group in discussion of the topic.

Following the discussion, each table leader will feedback to the whole group their key conclusions from the session.
Monetizing customer data and the associated ethics Increasing communication technology whilst decreasing its threat
Adapting the industry to compliment a modern workforce Financing projects through private stakeholders agreements
1:00pm Networking lunch
It is widely known that, on the whole, public transport ridership numbers across the US are down and have been reducing in recent years. On the other hand, micro transit ridership is on the rise. This section analyzes the whether there is a correlation between the two and the strategies available to put an end to this trend.
With transit infrastructure across the United States struggling due to a severe absence of maintenance and care, the industry is now in a position where change is essential to maintain operations. This section looks at responsibility, the strategies used elsewhere to ensure upkeep and the potential long term solutions to improve US infrastructure.
2:00pm Assessing total ridership numbers and the reasons for a wide reduction in these
• Analyze changes in ridership numbers across public transport and discuss any trends and their possible reasons.
• Look at the few areas in which numbers are increasing and examine the potential reasons for this in comparison to elsewhere.
• How can we as an industry begin to change habits and start reading a modal shift back to using public transit?
Assessing the state of infrastructure across the US: Who is responsible for its upkeep?
As infrastructure across the US continues to lack maintenance and age well beyond its intended lifespan, the argument of ownership and responsibility goes on. It is vital to move forwards and agree on some solutions to prevent potentially severe, yet increasingly likely events such as tunnel collapses which would cause disruption for many years and possible causalities. This session discusses the where the responsibilities lie and how to make progress before it is too late.
2:15pm What affect has the growth of micro transit had on the overall public transport ridership numbers and why are customers opting for these methods?
• To what extent has micro transit platforms such as Uber, Lyft and bike/scooter share had on the declining ridership numbers?
• Discuss the factors that attract customers to micro transit options over public transport such as connectivity and privacy.
• What changes could smart transit operators make to incorporate some of these factors into their own modes of transport?
The European method – Could the idea of private contracts be a way to help solve the lack of maintenance and gradually improve the nation’s infrastructure?
• Understand the European model for the responsibility of upkeep and maintenance of infrastructure and the UK franchising model.
• Assess the compatibility of these models for the purpose of infrastructure in the United States.
2:30pm How should the industry compete with micro transit? Do operators provide direct competition or rather find ways to embrace competitors and create partnerships?
• Discuss the options available to operators regarding the most appropriate approach to the surge in micro transit.
• What market is available for operators to directly compete with micro transit through their own forms of micro mobility platforms?
• What precedent is there for creating partnerships with micro transit companies where the two mobility providers work together to solve the first/last mile issue through means such as discounted fares?
Examine the restrictions being implemented on importing technologies from outside the US and understand how this could be impeding the industry from advancing
Since arriving in office, President Trump’s government has been a major advocate for the nation using its own home grown technologies rather than importing them from overseas. Whilst promoting the countries own industries and advances, this has meant that existing and potentially beneficial technologies already being used in other countries are not being implemented in the US. This session discusses the effects of the import restrictions and whether this is promoting internal technology or simply causing the transit industry to lag behind other nations that are working together trading ideas and resources.
2:45pm Advisory session Advisory session
3:00pm Regulating micro transit – how successful have agencies been in implementing regulations on micro transit operations and applying certain taxes?
Discussions have taken place in certain areas regarding the possibilities of transit authorities implementing new regulations upon micro transit companies that may make it more difficult to operate as they currently area. These regulations may be increasing safety requirements or implementing an increased amount of taxation. Examine the various ideas behind this and whether any of these have been successful.
Assessing what is problematic with retrofitting and why the aging infrastructure means that modern technologies are not being used to their full potential
• Assess the true financial aspect of retrofitting modern technologies onto older infrastructure considering the actual benefits and lifespan.
• Look at the long term aspect of retrofitting compared to full modernization rather than just for a short term solution.
• Examine the potential benefits of retrofitted software and assess whether they are benefitting the system as much as they otherwise would do so.
3:15pm Panel discussion: Innovative strategies to best deal with micro transit companies that provide a quality service whilst significantly undercutting competitors.
• Discuss ways to financially complete with companies providing a service that is far higher than what would normally be expected at that cost.
• Assess ways that micro transit companies could be used to compliment public transport companies such as bus services which have severe capacity issues.
• In what ways can public transportation adapt to provide a more private and personal door to door service?
Panel discussion: Discuss ways to improve infrastructure and gain extra funding from federal and local governments, operators, and other private businesses.
• Discuss the strategies that are most likely to break the impasse in terms of improving infrastructure and how to make this possible.
• Discuss possibilities of gaining public funding from federal or local sources and how to increase the likelihood of this being accepted.
• Discuss how to gain funding from private sources that may benefit from projects and may invest a certain percentage of the total cost.
3:45pm Networking coffee break
Passenger comfort is considered to be a key reason as to why customers may opt to travel by private means rather than via public transit and overcrowding certainly plays a significant factor in this. At the same time roads are heavily congested which not only makes it difficult for buses but suggests that many potential public transit passengers are still opting to travel via car. This section looks a the strategies being used to reduce downtown congestion, decrease overcrowding on transit and ultimately increase public transport ridership.
The pace of advancements in AI, robotics and machine learning have opened up a range of new possibilities when concerning the maintenance of infrastructure. From using data to predict failures before they occur to prioritizing maintenance tasks and even performing the tasks more quickly and with less manpower, modern technologies have revolutionized the way maintenance and repairs are performed. This section examines the new and innovative ways to perform maintenance and in doing so, drastically reduce downtime and increase efficiency.
4:15pm The implementation of a congestion charge and how successful this has been in promoting public transport usage
Many major cities worldwide have adopted the idea of a congestion charge within downtown areas to reduce traffic congestion, promote the use of public transport and also reduce carbon emissions. This session examines the infrastructure and software required and the strategies used to implement such technologies while assessing the impact since its implementation.
Predictive maintenance – using analytics to predict failures and increase uptime
• The benefits of failure analysis and how predicting failures can lead to an increase in uptime and optimization.
• Assessing predictive maintenance and the true potential of machine learning.
• Understand how data analytics and machine learning can enable prioritized maintenance where operators prioritize workload based on the severity and financial implications.
4:30pm Advisory session Advisory session
4:45pm Intelligent strategies to reduce capacity problems
• Assess ways to increase or maintain passenger numbers whilst reducing overcrowded services,
• Discuss possibilities and advantages of running other forms of mobility alongside regular services at busy times.
• Examine the possibility of using software to provide real-time information to customers and make them aware of the level of congestion at that particular time.
Modernized maintenance – the benefits of robots over the need to send a workforce
• How new technology enables efficiencies within the workforce.
• Understand why remote devices allow prioritized maintenance and therefore increase efficiency.
• Change management and the need to train staff to use new and innovative forms of technology.
5:00pm Panel discussion: Discuss the need for smarter timetabling methods
• Understand how the implementation of modern automated timetabling technology can drastically improve operations and increase efficiency.
• Examine the possibilities around flexible real-time timetabling and its ability to react to demand and unforeseen incidents.
• Examine ways in which smart timetabling can assess rider usage at particular times to provide extra services during these slots.
Panel discussion: The evolving methods for maintenance & the resulting effect on workforce
• Understand how the advancements in robotics and machine learning are drastically changing how maintenance is performance and what is involved.
• Examine how these changes affect the daily activities involved in maintenance and adaptations required in terms of skills.
• Understand the future outlook of infrastructure maintenance and where operators should focus its attention going forwards in terms of investment and enhancing the workforce
The workshop sessions offer a perfect platform for interaction, debate, and sharing of best practice. Following the moderators' introductory presentation, delegates will sit on tables of no more than 10 led by specialist facilitators and will discuss the challenges presented on their tables. Each table will then feed their conclusions back to the whole group, so you can take practical information back to the office to improve your business.
5:30pm Building the framework for enabling Mobility-as-a-Service partnerships Innovative solutions for meeting State of Good Repair commitments 
6:30pm Networking drinks reception

  Wednesday 30th October
 9:15am Welcome address
The pressure from environmentalists and stewardship agencies has never been as strong and the need to reduce emissions to meet regulations is becoming more and more relevant. States such as California are tightening down on carbon emissions and challenging targets are being placed onto companies to ensure a cleaner environment and more healthy way of living for local residents. This section examines the less obvious ways to reduce emissions and assesses the business case for other energy sources such as the electrification of vehicles and networks.
9:20am  Alternative propulsion substance to reduce carbon emissions
• What is being done to reduce the use of diesel across the transport industry?
• Electric cars, buses and trains are available but what are the setbacks?
• Examine the results and operators that have already implemented non-diesel vehicles?
9:35am  Understanding the de-carbonization laws in California and the consequences associated with not hitting targets in future years
California, Colorado and other environmentally conscious states have introduced many extra restrictions and strategies in recent years aimed at cutting carbon emissions and various types of pollution. What are the changes, how far are we from targets and what would we risk by not achieving these?
9:50am  Advisory session
10:50am  Electrification: When is it worth it?
• Assess the business case for electrification depending on the size of the network and its usage levels.
• At what point does the long term benefits offset the original financial outlay on capital?
• Would electrification cause extra problems due to factors such as weather, electrical lines or increase visual pollution at the same time as reducing carbon pollution?
10:20am  Panel discussion: Other ways of reducing emissions to meet targets
In addition to vehicles and trains, there are a number of other ways in which the industry can cut its emissions and in doing so, take valuable steps towards reaching environmental targets. This session discusses the other types of infrastructure where changes can be made such as warehouses and maintenance depots which are often overlooked but could make an important difference going forwards.
10:50am  Networking coffee break
The need for constant connectivity has never been greater as WiFi and communications continues to become more and more heavily relied upon by operators and customers alike. This section looks at the need for constant connectivity and how the industry must adapt to changing customer needs as they embrace contactless payment methods that do not involve cash or even a physical card.
Although many areas of infrastructure have now implemented PTC, the roll out has been somewhat slower than first expected. The aim of this section is not only to look into the benefits of PTC and the argument for its implementation, but also provides the conference with an update as to where it is now readily available and the difficulties and challenges to overcome.
 11:20am Discuss the idea that constant connectivity has become essential to meet the needs of younger customers and for them to consider public transport
There has been a shift of public demand over recent years due to the access and reliability of the internet and overall connectivity. The younger generation are now constantly connected to media and the transit industry must adapt to this shift to attract these people groups.
• Assess how the reliability on apps and the world wide web has impacted on mobility habits with transit playing catch up.
• Discuss the options available for on board WiFi to improve connectivity across the network to attract the younger generation.
• Examine the benefits of a connected network with the introduction of apps and ability to send instant updates/information to passengers.
An update on the roll out of PTC – where it is and is not being used to date
• Gain an understanding of the status of PTC in the US and the extent of its rollout across the network
• Where is PTC lagging behind and for what reason?
• Assess any links and trends as to where PTC is already being applied in comparison to where the system is not being used.
• What are the implications, if any, to areas that have not implemented PTC? Are there any plans in place to penalize these areas in an attempt to further promote its implementation?
11:35am  Making use of the latest payment technologies available and the advantages of making travel as easy as possible for passengers
• Assess the constantly developing technologies being used to make financial transactions.
• Assess the status of smartcards in cities where they have been implemented, how they have been rolled out, and their success.
• How can the industry embrace modern payment methods such as contactless cards, smartphones and smart watches?
Understanding the difficulties associated with implementing PTC onto an aging legacy system
• What is causing the delays and why is the implementation of the new technology so difficult on such as old system?
• What are the costs for upgrades and is the system interoperable and reaching its true potential?
• Understand why ensuring PTC is completely interoperable has unearthed more complex issues than first expected.
11:50am  Advisory session Advisory session
12:05pm  Integrated Payment Systems: Working with other operators to provide the best priced fares on a single ticket that covers a full journey
• Understand the challenges to overcome to ensure collaboration between operators for a working integrated system.
• Discuss the benefits that integrated payment would bring to customers that use multiple forms of transport for a single journey.
• How can operators work together to ensure passengers are able to use various operators and mobility types on a single journey with just one ticket at the most reasonable fare?
The importance of PTC and signalling when related specifically to freight transportation
The application of PTC onto the freight network has been achieved at a much quicker rate than that of passenger rail. Gain an understanding of the status of PTC in the US and the extent of its rollout across the network
• How effective has PTC been on the freight network and does this link in with the quicker implementation?
• Examine how the complexity of making PTC work for the four main components of freight operations has caused issues in each area
 12:20pm Panel discussion: Other forms of automated payment technology such as the use of cameras and recognition
What other technologies are now available that mobility platforms could intelligently implement to further enhance the payment of fares? This may include software able to:
• Track distance travelled
• Provide automatic recognition
• Estimate destinations based on previous habits
Panel discussion: Discuss the benefits of implementing PTC in ways such as safety and standardization. Getting the absolute most out of its use
Many have questioned the financial sense behind the rollout of PTC against the actual benefits it provides. Gain an understanding of the status of PTC in the US and the extent of its rollout across the network
• Examine the benefits of standardization and the safety element of PTC and discuss whether this method is the most efficient to achieve these factors.
12:50pm Networking lunch
One of the main problems facing public transit is the ability to provide passengers with an experience that rivals that of micro transit and private vehicles. The level of comfort, privacy and ease of access associated with the other forms of mobility means that transit companies need to improve their overall service. This section looks at innovative ways to attract passengers to use the system regularly and improve public opinion on public transport in terms of safety and on board experience.
Signalling technologies continue develop with new ideas for improving the network via both operations and overall safety. This section assess the business case for implementing such technologies and at the most effective locations as well as the ways in which they can ultimately increase the intelligence of operations, before focusing on improving the national network through projects such as high speed rail.
 1:50pm Fare pricing strategies – the advantages of fare caps and loyalty systems to reward regular riders
• What are the advantages of providing a more flexible fare system that varies depending on capacity, times and distance travelled?
• Understand the benefits of fare capping to help promote ridership and discuss how this could be successfully implemented,
• How could a loyalty system be implemented onto transit with the goal of increasing passenger numbers and satisfaction?
Latest advancements in signalling such as signal priority technologies
• Assess the latest signalling technologies and the difficulties associated with fitting them onto a legacy system.
• Understand how applying signalling systems that support prioritization can improve services and increase operational efficiency.
• Examine the long term cost benefits associated with fitting modern signalling technologies considering various aspects such as maintenance requirements
 2:05pm Improving the on board experience through seating, hygiene and service information
In order to compete with other forms of transportation there is a need to provide customers with the most comfortable travel experience possible. This session discusses the variety of aspects that could improve passenger experience through seating availability, air conditioning and circulation, cleanliness and providing instant up-to-date service information through on board systems of directly to smartphones.
Understanding the capabilities of signal sensors and the benefits to improve rail crossing safety
• What technologies are available that can effectively collect and distribute information using automated signalling sensors?
• How can communication technologies such as bluetooth emit information that could potentially improve safety at hotspots such as railway crossings?
• Understand the ways in which sensors at various points of a system could effectively improve operations and efficiency.
2:20pm  Advisory session Advisory session
2:35pm  The importance of providing safety and assurance to customers concerned about the heightened risks of travelling in large numbers
• How are transit companies providing the safest possible environment to passengers travelling on their systems?
• What more can be done to assure the public of their safety while ensuring they remain vigilant to potential risks?
• Are security measures and response strategies adequate to the evolving risks presented to public safety?
Update on US High Speed Rail projects following recent funding difficulties in California
There has been a recent surge in the possibility of introducing high speed rail projects in the US and linking certain major cities via railway. With trains now able to travel at 250mph, high speed rail could potentially be a good option to travel distances considered too far for cars, but too small for flying. This session examines the progress being made on projects such as the proposed Houston/Dallas railway line from a financial aspect and looks at the benefits it would provide.
• What are the costs of high speed rail projects and how do they compare to the benefits the system would provide?
• How could the option of HSR genuinely make a difference and change the habits of US citizens who currently only consider transport via car or plane?
• Discuss the potential for a larger high speed network across the US and the possibility of various networks linking up in the future.
 2:50pm Panel discussion: Why choose transit?
• What are the barriers to customers effectively using transit networks?
• Which customer experience factors do riders prioritise?
• How can transit compete with other modes of transport?
• What demographic factors lead to riders choosing transit over other modes?
Panel discussion: Capitalising on digital assets
• Understanding the needs of your organisation and buying intelligently
• To what extent is real-time data possible across the transit network?
• Combining data from different sources: how to extract the best value?
3:20pm  Panel discussion: Implementing MaaS and making cities smarter
• Discuss the advantages of data sharing between agencies and operators and standardizing both data and operations to enable transit companies to work together more effectively.
• Discuss the first/last mile issue and how the implementation of MaaS would be an effective solution.
• Examine strategies to interlink neighborhoods within cities more effectively rather than the constant focus on going downtown so that public transit is available on a much wider scale and city transport networks are smarter and much more effective.
4:10pm  Closing speech
4:15pm  End of SmartTransit 2019