News / Edmonton

Edmonton LRT signs fixed, after breaking last April

They'd stopped working because of a software issue related to the new Metro line

The train to Century Park arrived—right when the sign above said it would—on Friday afternoon.

Alex Boyd/For Metro

The train to Century Park arrived—right when the sign above said it would—on Friday afternoon.

At long last, the LRT’s digital arrival signs are operational, nine months after going dark.

The signs, which tell people waiting when the next train arrives, have been undergoing testing during off-peak hours, and were turned on for the commuter rush for the first time Friday morning, Deputy City Manager Adam Laughlin said.

“We’re going to test this week, over the weekend and hopefully this stays in place,” he said.  

The signs were turned off last April after they’d started to show the wrong information, which city officials chalked up to a software problem.

The Metro line extension came with a new PA and sign system for both the Metro and the Capital line, but the new software clashed with the old, Laughlin said.

He said the issue was the result of “the complexity associated with different types of software and making sure one maps to the other.”

“We had some gaps that we discovered,” he added.

The problem was made worse by issues with the Metro line, which made it harder to track the location of trains.

But despite assurances from officials back in June that it the signs would be operational again "as soon as possible," they’ve remained dark ever since, leaving riders to wonder when the next train would arrive.

Coleen Dzuda, normally a bus rider, was waiting for the LRT at Churchill Station Friday afternoon for the first time.

“This is more helpful,” she said, gesturing to the sign overhead. “It tells you which train is coming next, so you don’t find yourself getting onto the wrong train.”

“And if you do have to wait, you know exactly the amount of time. It’s not like you’re guessing.”

As for the Metro line itself, Laughlin called the signs a “a positive step” that shows the city is making progress on the bigger issues, but getting the line up to speed remains “a work in progress.”

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