Title

INTEGRATED SMART-CARD FARE SYSTEM: RESULTS FROM FIELD OPERATIONAL TEST

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2000

Subject Area

place - north america

Keywords

Ventura County (California), Transit riders, Technology, Smart cards, Performance, Operational tests, Language, Integrated circuit cards, Institutional issues, Income, Feasibility analysis, Demonstration projects, Contactless fare cards, Chip cards

Abstract

Evaluation results of the Ventura County smart card Phase III field demonstration are presented to show the feasibility of using smart cards and other technology to provide an integrated fare medium across several transit operators. The evaluation addressed technical performance, user response, and institutional issues. Technical performance was affected by installation problems, equipment failures, and communications problems. Technical problems often were the outcome of institutional issues. Smart-card users were very satisfied with the new fare medium; however, transit patrons in Ventura County have very low incomes, many are not English speaking, and few transit users bought and used the cards. Overall, the demonstration suffered from the absence of clear roles and responsibilities as well as a lack of understanding of the complexity and demands of the technology.