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October 25, 2013

RTC Southern Nevada launches Wi-Fi, other high-tech initiatives

Photo courtesy Mariordo, Wikimedia Commons

Photo courtesy Mariordo, Wikimedia Commons

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) added Wi-Fi service on select routes.

This latest pilot program joins other high-tech RTC initiatives, including a paperless fare pilot program and a new smartphone app that allows commuters to easily record their commutes as part of the RTC’s Club Ride program.

The RTC will offer Wi-Fi through AT&T on 12 of its transit vehicles serving the Centennial Express (CX) route as part of a 90-day pilot program.

“Enhancing the customer experience and making transit more attractive to commuters was a primary reason for initiating the pilot program,” said RTC GM Tina Quigley.

“Riding transit offers people the perfect opportunity to do work, catch up on their e-mail or surf the web,” she added. “Piloting this Wi-Fi program not only allows our customers to be connected, but allows us to gain insight as to the appetite our customers have for these types of services.”

The RTC’s other high-tech pilot program is “TransitTap,” which eliminates the need for paper transit tickets by letting customers pay fare by simply tapping a MasterCard PayPass credit or prepaid debit card or smartphone equipped with NFC (Near Field Communication) service to the card reader when boarding transit vehicles. Developed by Samsung SDS, “TransitTap” launched in September and is also available along the CX route.

Another technology recently introduced by the RTC is a mobile application via its Club Ride Commuter Services program. Using the new smartphone app, RTC Club Ride commuters can easily record their commute as part of the incentive program designed to attract more commuters to use alternative forms of transportation, such as transit, carpooling and cycling. Available for iPhone and Android users, the new Club Ride Rewards App has been downloaded by more than 525 participants since it launched in late August. With the Club Ride Rewards App, participating commuters now have six options to log their commutes, including via text, phone, onsite touch screen kiosks, VeriFone swipe terminals and online at rtcsnv.com.

These programs join a bevy of other technology solutions that the RTC has already implemented, such as RTC’s Ride Tracker, a mobile website that provide riders with an updated status of a vehicle’s location; rideRTC, which provides bus schedule information via text message; and FAST Freeway Traffic Alerts, which provide traffic and incident updates from local freeways and arterials via email or text message.

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