Mobility

Columbus launching first city-managed payment platform

Posted on August 19, 2019

The payment for the entire journey, such as public transit and cab fares, is occurring just once, with the respective fares automatically routed to the right services.
COTA
The payment for the entire journey, such as public transit and cab fares, is occurring just once, with the respective fares automatically routed to the right services.COTA

Siemens Mobility will work with Bytemark to provide a common payment solution for Columbus’ Smart Columbus trip planning app — the first-ever publicly operated platform single-account, single-payment system that allows for both public and private mobility services to be paid using a single account-based payment system.

The payment system will now fulfill the back-end payment portion of the trip-planning capabilities currently provided on the open-source “Smart Columbus” OS platform. With this centralized payment capability, Smart Columbus is pushing the boundaries of current “smart city” applications by seamlessly including multiple public and private modes of transportation as choices when choosing multi-leg trips; making it easier to go door-to-door with public transportation.

  • The payment for the entire journey, such as public transit and cab fares, is occurring just once, with the respective fares automatically routed to the right services.
  • The payment platform will integrate all mobility provider payments — spanning both public and private mobility options, as well as multiple modes including bike-share, scooter-share, and ride-share.

One scenario where commuters could benefit is traffic congestion along their typical commute home. Now with this new all-in-one app, they can identify whether bus, train, or Lyft would be faster; and then see how those or other options (bicycle or scooter) can take them home for that final mile. Once they choose the optimal route, they can pay for the entire trip at one time.

Smart Columbus is a joint initiative of the City and Columbus Partnership, which is utilizing government grants and private investment for mobility projects to improve the region’s transportation system. The goal is to act as a “living lab” and document a working plan and playbook for other metro areas to follow.

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