Bright, shiny, new streetcars that convey "choice riders" around town are typically seen as a boon in any urban area. But the truth is that today's streetcars are making transit worse. It's time that municipal governments face up to the theft of public transit resources that the new streetcar lines really are.
Today's public transportation systems are becoming simply too big, complex, and popular for humans to maintain. Maintaining this infrastructure is a complex task that's only becoming more complicated with the steady increase in population and the rise of megacities. But we are finding that our greatest assets in tackling these challenges are data and smarter infrastructure software. With sensors and mobile technology, we can finally create the smart networks we need to understand these ever-changing systems.