Wednesday, August 27, 2008

OC Transpo SmartCards on their way

According to a story in the Ottawa Citizen, OC Transpo is going to have a SmartCard transit payment system in place by 2011. The system will also be fully integrated with that of STO's buses, which is such a smart idea. From the story:
The cards would store either transit passes or a cash value, with card readers on buses and O-Train platforms. They would be replenished online, by telephone, by pre-arranged direct debit, or at current OC Transpo sales offices and vendors. Enforcement officers would have portable smartcard readers to ensure proof of payment.
What a great idea--even if it will cost $21M. Considering expenses on bus tickets and passes currently must be very high, the SmartCard system might actually be a cost-savings. It'll be a lot easier for bus drivers, too, I can imagine.