The SACOG team at the launch of their new regional smart card system.

The SACOG team at the launch of their new regional smart card system.

The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) launched the Connect Card, a region-wide fare collection system implemented by INIT Innovations in Transportation Inc. The system incorporates nine transit agencies covering six counties within the Sacramento region serving a population of 2.5 million.

Connect Cards can be used on more than 500 buses and at approximately 80 light rail station platforms using smart card passenger terminals. Retail sales terminals and the consumer website will provide riders with convenient ways to add transit fare or cash value to their smartcards.

Travel by public transit will become much simpler using the Connect Card. Using INIT’s PROXmobil passenger terminals, riders will tap on when boarding buses, or at platforms when getting on trains. The transaction will automatically be debited for the exact fare for that ride. Reduced boarding times at stops will increase efficiency and on-time performance while decreasing transit driver workloads.

The Connect Card system supports SACOG’s mission to offer an efficient region-wide transportation system connecting the counties of El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo, and Yuba. Increases in ridership are also expected, as SACOG hopes the convenience of the Connect Card will entice more people to take public transportation.

The management of all relevant fare details, including revenue sharing between agencies, is controlled by INIT’s back-office system, MOBILEvario. This software solution configures all fare collection and clearing processes for each of the individual agencies while streamlining work processes and enhancing services for all passengers.

The Connect Card soft launched last fall and has built up to over 2,000 users. Now that the system is live, the nine-agency transit consortium expects more seamless travel throughout the region.

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