Seoul to develop AI-based subway congestion measurement solution

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : June 20, 2023, 16:28 Updated : June 20, 2023, 16:53

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SEOUL -- Seoul's subway train operator will develop an artificial intelligence-based solution that can calculate the degree of subway station congestion in real time. The solution will analyze images provided by closed-circuit television cameras and cross-check them through other data such as transport card usage data and a sensor capable of measuring the weight of a train.
According to data released by Seoul Metro, the average number of daily subway passengers using eight lines increased to about 5.9 million in 2022 from some 5.3 million in 2021. Gangnam Station, a subway station in the capital city's southern district known as Seoul's heart of fashion and finance, was the most crowded station with 99,136 passengers a day. The average number of daily subway users was about 7.3 million in 2019 before the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country.
Seoul Metro said in a statement on June 20 that the railway operator will carry out a research project to provide a solution for congestion at subway stations in the capital city. Beacons, which periodically transmit signals to provide location data, will be also used to cross-verify the solution’s analysis based on CCTV images. Without disclosing details on the release date, Seoul Metro said the solution's congestion data would be used for passengers and workers at subway stations.
"The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport will later announce specific details regarding measurement standards such as whether we should include people in the elevator or in the bathroom," Seoul Metro’s congestion degree calculation bureau head Choi Min-ju told Aju Business Daily. 

Seoul Metro is currently operating 275 stations in eight subway lines. Most passengers take subway trains using T-Money Card, a transportation card that is used like a debit card or pre-paid card. 
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