Dubai: A new time management system is all set to reduce waiting time for passengers at malls and event venues as the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) aims to ease mobility around key locations in the city.

The Smart Time Management System (STMS) is being launched at various locations popular for hosting major exhibitions and conferences, enabling the RTA to get real-time data on the number of visitors at different locations and accordingly deploy the appropriate number of transit means.

According to the RTA, the system will also help passengers to get information on the number of available vehicles along with the expected waiting time.

Mattar Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of RTA, hailed the system as a gamechanger after attended a briefing about the smart system for managing the waiting time during events.

The idea of the STMS was conceived as part of RTA’s aims to streamline management of transport around event venues, especially as Dubai plays host to more than 500 events per year.

It will also ensure the smooth entry and exit of visitors, and the availability of different transit services, which are among the key success factors of any event.

“To realise these objectives, RTA is seeking to deliver services that exceed customer expectations. RTA is keen to continue improving customer services and reducing the waiting time in line with the best practices in the world,” said Al Tayer.

A team of RTA experts made a series of field visits to event venues in Dubai to get first-hand feedback and assess customer needs for taxis. The team then conducted a comprehensive study of venues to identify challenges encountered by clients when ordering taxis during events.

Accordingly, the idea of the system popped up, and it has been tested during two events held at the Dubai World Trade Centre for seven days.

During the trial, about 12,000 clients benefited from the system at both events, at a rate of 1,700 clients per day. The system has also been tested at one of The Dubai Mall entrances for two days. Results of both trials showed a drop in the waiting time for taxi riders and a rise in customer satisfaction rating.

The system comprises screens placed at the start, middle and end of the queue, a device for counting visitors and sorting out the type of service required at the start of the queue, and a device to measure customer satisfaction rating.

It also has a computer server, cameras to read the number plates of taxis at the entry and exit points of the event, and horizontal cameras for remote monitoring of the event.

The system has a smart mobile unit for monitoring events in the form of a vehicle fitted with smart technologies, sophisticated monitoring cameras, and two smart offices to facilitate the communication with the booking and control centres as well as supporting government entities.

This unit contributes immensely to the streamlining and monitoring of passenger transport services during mega-events. In the future, it will be linked with the Smart Transportation Centre to serve more than 23 other events.

Taxis in Dubai continue to be a popular mode of transport, serving 87.849 million passengers in the first half of this year.