Waze teams up with MTA, Port Authority to ease tunnel navigation

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Waze is teaming up with the MTA and the Port Authority to bring Waze Beacons to New York City tunnels in an effort to enbale better navigation where GPS signals may drop out.

Waze Beacons went live in the Holland Tunnel, Lincoln Tunnel, Queens-Midtown Tunnel, and Hugh L. Carey (Brooklyn Battery) Tunnel Tuesday, marking the first time multiple partners have collaborated to install Waze Beacons and enable seamless navigation for all tunnel entrances and exits within a single city.

"Bringing Waze Beacons to New York City marks a momentous occasion for our program," said Gil Disatnik, head of Waze Beacons. "This affordable, scalable, open-source technology is easy to install and can instantly help with tunnel navigation. At Waze, we are focused on leveraging technology to promote road safety and make it easier for people to navigate throughout the world."

The New York launch of Waze Beacons follows successful installations in nine cities around the world, including Chicago; Boston; Pittsburgh; Rio de Janiero, Brazil; Paris; Florence, Italy; Haifa, Israel; Jihlava, Czech Republic; and Oslo, Norway.

"We are excited to bring this innovative technology to our tunnels, as it will provide significant benefits to motorists by delivering uninterrupted real-time traffic data that enhances the customer experience," MTA Managing Director Veronique Hakim said. "Together with Cashless Tolling, this further underscores our commitment to modernizing our facilities so we can better serve customers now and for many years to come."

Waze Beacons were invented in-house at Waze, and installations began in 2016. The technology is simple to install, and Beacons use open-source technology to make third-party integration simple and seamless.

"The Port Authority is strongly committed to leveraging new technology to improve the customer experience for the tens of thousands of travelers who use our crossings each day," Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton said. "Last year, we launched our Crossing Time app that provides commuters with real-time traffic conditions at all agency bridges and tunnels. Today, we are activating new technology pioneered by Waze that will provide better GPS navigation capabilities for drivers as they drive through the Lincoln and Holland tunnels and MTA tunnels. We will provide further 21st Century technological tools to our customers as they are developed."

To learn more about Waze Beacons, visit waze.com/beacons.

----------
* More New York City news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
* Follow us on YouTube
Copyright © 2019 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.