Keeping the customer at the centre of the project presents unique challenges to designers in addressing the user experience in early stages of design.
The development of a ‘Customer Connectivity tool’ that allows for rapid testing and design of the railway alignment is supporting delivery of improved customer experience and community benefit.
The tool joins a suite of digital technologies being used in the design of Sydney Metro including modelling, digital engineering and visualisation, and aligns with a broader transformation within the rail industry where technology and data is being increasingly used to make the best decisions regarding safety, design and user experience.
Connectivity and Experience
Sydney Metro is currently Australia’s biggest public transport project. Stage 1 and 2 of the standalone railway will deliver 31 metro stations and more than 66 km of new metro rail. Stage 2, Sydney Metro City and Southwest, includes 15.5 km of twin tunnels along with seven new underground stations between Chatswood and Sydenham. Finally, Sydney Metro West is Sydney’s next underground metro railway linking the Parramatta CBD to the Sydney CBD and a once-in-a-century infrastructure investment that will transform the way Sydney moves for generations to come. Planning and identification of the number and location of potential stations began in October 2017.
The Customer Connectivity tool which was deployed on the project uses open-source transport data to inform high-level transport planning decisions regarding the placement of new rail infrastructure and its integration into the existing public transport network.
Rafid Morshedi, WSP’s Data Analytics and Automation Engineer for the project, says, “The customer is at the centre of everything we do and the Customer Connectivity tool provides a way of measuring customer outcomes. Never before have we had the ability to incorporate customer access to destinations such as hospitals and employment into the development of alignments so early in the design process.
“The solution gave our client, Transport for NSW, a level of surety that customers were being considered and enabled key design decisions to be made with a greater level of confidence.
“Quantifying the benefits of different options early in design was critical in guiding alignment development to ensure that the new railway would benefit as many people as possible.
“The alignment design process is complex and time consuming, but with the Customer Connectivity tool we now have a powerful and rapid new method of testing and designing railway alignments for optimal customer and community benefit.”
Rafid was a nominee for the 2018 Australasian Rail Industry’s Permanent Way Institution Young Achievers Award. He has a broad range of experiences and skills gained from working in both the public and private sectors, having worked on various large transport projects including Sydney Metro Northwest, Newcastle Light Rail and the Western Sydney Freight Line.
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