Technology

RIPTA partners with INIT for electronic fare management project

Posted on February 7, 2018

INIT will implement an account-based electronic fare and back-office revenue management system on RIPTA's fixed-route fleet of more than 240 buses. Photo: © Bill Marchetti
INIT will implement an account-based electronic fare and back-office revenue management system on RIPTA's fixed-route fleet of more than 240 buses. Photo: © Bill Marchetti

The Rhode Island Public Transportation Authority (RIPTA) has chosen INIT Innovations in Transportation Inc. to implement an account-based electronic fare and back-office revenue management system on their fixed-route fleet of more than 240 buses. The contract includes EMV-capable e-fare validators, the integration of a Bytemark mobile ticketing app, as well as an option to implement platform validators and Ticket Vending Machines (TVM) in future phases of RIPTA’s fare collection upgrade project and plans.

Once implemented, RIPTA passengers will be able to pay fares by simply tapping their card or mobile device on a validator. INIT’s back-end processing software, MOBILEvario, will calculate the fare, validate the transaction against the back office account and display the remaining balance to the rider in real-time. This means riders can instantly view their account transactions at any time. The new system will allow passengers to enjoy faster boarding and more convenient fare options.

“This update will not only make it easier for riders to manage their fares, but it will also speed up boarding times and cut back on the time people have to spend counting coins and bills,” said Amy Pettine, Interim CEO of RIPTA.

RIPTA’s On-line Validation Server (OVS) is designed for the anticipated future acceptance of contactless EMV media like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Android Pay.

The project will be implemented using an open architecture design. This means RIPTA will be able to integrate new, as well as their existing partners easily. For example, the INIT EFM system will incorporate RIPTA’s current providers of their CAD/AVL system and fare boxes for a fully functional solution. INIT’s open architecture model is demonstrated in all of their EFM projects including those in Tampa, FL (RWG), Portland-Vancouver Metropolitan Area (TriMet) and Grand Rapids, Mich. (The Rapid).

RIPTA hopes to slowly transition the majority of its fare transactions to mobile, retail, web, and agency-internal e-fare smartcards allowing them to utilize closed-loop, open-loop and open payment options. They anticipate moving from cash-on- board to retail network purchases, both to allow access for all riders with more convenient options for purchasing fares and meet their goal of steadily increasing advanced fare versus on-bus purchases.

INIT was recommended by the RIPTA Project Management Team and subsequently approved for Award by their Board of Directors on October 16, 2017. RIPTA’s Planning Department is currently in work now with INIT on the beginning phase of the project.

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