VIA Metropolitan Transit Revolutionizes Urban Navigation with Cutting-Edge Technology

VIA Introduces NaviLens Technology to Make Public Transit More Accessible for Riders


SAN ANTONIO – VIA Metropolitan Transit has unveiled NaviLens, a cutting-edge technology system designed to enhance accessibility and user-friendliness for all riders, with a special focus on those who are visually impaired, have low vision or do not speak English. The system will see the installation of QR code-style signs at bus stops and transit locations across the city, with plans to roll out 6,000 signs by next year.

NaviLens is an app that can be downloaded for free on your smartphone. When scanned with a smartphone at one of the newly installed signs, these codes provide real-time audio directions to help riders navigate to their desired stops and buses. The app uses your phone’s camera to detect nearby signs up to 60 feet away and provides clear directions in over 34 languages.

Communications manager Lorraine Pulido highlighted the app’s benefits for non-English speakers, stating that it offers audio information in up to 34 languages. In addition to providing navigation assistance, NaviLens also offers next-bus information and updates for more efficient trip planning.

The rollout cost over $600,000 and was federally funded as part of an effort to improve accessibility. By the end of 2024, San Antonio aims to become the first US city with systemwide adoption of NaviLens. Pulido believes that this technology will “revolutionize the way people travel.”

For those interested in trying out NaviLens, detailed installation and usage instructions can be found on VIA’s website.

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