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Network Rail and Hack Partners launch early industry engagement for intra-station routing API

30 June 2022 | Hack Partners

The Network Rail Research & Development Portfolio has funded a leading UK technology pioneer to make significant improvements for passengers. The new solution, developed by transport system software developer Hack Partners, allows for proactive reporting on the status of lifts and escalators at stations so passengers can better plan their journeys.

The new software application and public Application Programming Interface (API) enables:

  • 3rd party application developers to access lift and escalator live availability and intra-station routing logic for stations across Great Britain
  • App developers, who build transport planning applications can use this API to give passengers the information they need to make it easier for passengers and prevent passengers getting stranded on platforms because lifts and escalators are not working
  • Supported by Network Rail, this technology is a key example of the great strides to improve passenger information in-line with the Great British Railways Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail

Haydon Bartlett-Tasker, the Managing Director of Hack Partners stated: “Hack Partners is putting advanced AI, analytics, and image processing to work for the betterment of transportation systems and we are energised to introduce this new capability in collaboration with Network Rail.”

“Our approach will enable software applications to have real-time status for lifts and escalators at stations across the UK, greatly reducing the number of missed trains and connections for millions of passengers each year. Through our work with Network Rail, we look forward to building on this use case with other breakthrough solutions designed to make the railway better for passengers”

Russell Sweeting-White, Principal Engineer, Technical Authority, Network Rail
, said: “Providing passengers with level access information is at the heart of making rail accessible to all, the creation of this real-time lift and escalator live availability information shall enhance the passenger experience, particularly for those with accessibility needs. This exciting next phase shall deliver internal station routing information, unlocking the potential for future automated level access journey planning and re-routing. Network Rail – Putting the Passenger First”

"Network Rail has always cared about the passenger experience and this technology innovation is a key example of how Network Rail is putting passengers first."

The team at Network Rail and Hack Partners welcome feedback as they develop the API for industry. If you would like to be a beta user please email with the subject “Re-route me”.

The API was presented as part of the early industry engagement during the “Unlocking Innovation for Passenger Railways” event held by the Railway Industry Association. 

Notes to Editors

About Hack Partners

Hack Partners develops cutting-edge software designed to help a world on the move, move better. Our expertise in AI, Automation, Analytics, and Image Processing is already helping railway systems in the UK, some of the world’s most demanding, improve operational performance, efficiency, and safety by finding or predicting potential hazards before they cause delays or potential risks. Based in
London, Hack Partners is rapidly extending their platform to railway systems across the UK and use cases beyond rail transport, and looks forward to growing their footprint on a global scale.

Press Contact: Haydon Bartlett-Tasker
Number: 07796600458

About Network Rail R&D

Network Rail are investing £245m (2019 – 2024) through the Research and Development Portfolio. Our R&D portfolio is part of an industrywide effort that signals a new era for investment in technology. It offers; opportunities for all and creates a focus to bring together new partnerships, some synonymous with rail,  some new to rail and some that may have yet to start up.

If you’re an existing or future partner or supplier, the R&D team can help you navigate your way to contributing to and exploiting our R&D portfolio. If your idea or proposal sparks interest, we’ll consider how we can help you which could include:
• data to help develop your product;
• helping aid products through development stages;
• honest and open commercial conversations;
• supporting overall readiness for real-world usage;
• guidance navigating product acceptance processes;
• introductions to our test centers or support in identifying appropriate test locations; and
• guidance using the Rail Industry Readiness Levels (RIRLs), to support preparation for implementation.

We are also encouraging contractors, suppliers and stakeholders to propose changes to our standards as part of our Open for Business Programme.

For more details visit:

Press Contact: Sophie Davies
Number: 07732644544

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