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Old 11-19-2017, 09:56 PM   #1
Mongo
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AFC 2.0 Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement System

New details released:

http://www.masslive.com/news/index.s..._youll_be.html

Some highlights:

Unified fare system

In and out gates, mainly for the commuter rail

ALL DOOR BOARDING ON BUSSES AND GREEN LINE

Pay with phone or card

Fully implemented by May 2021

More details here:

https://d3044s2alrsxog.cloudfront.net/sites/default/files/2017-09/2017-09-18-afc2-procurement-update.pptx

Last edited by Mongo; 11-20-2017 at 07:11 AM.
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Old 11-20-2017, 08:38 AM   #2
jass
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

From the PPT, the customer suggestions:

Quote:
“Make a single integrated way to pay for commuter rail, ferry, AND subway/bus.”
Can be done with Charlie

Quote:
“Make it easier to reload online…Imagine how easy it would be if there was an app to add money to your Charlie Card.”
Can be done with Charlie

Quote:
“Adopt proof of payment system for commuter rail and light rail systems. It would speed boarding.”
Can be done with Charlie

Quote:
“I'd prefer not to have to pick up a new pass every month.”
Can be done with Charlie

Quote:
“No one seems to know how to get a plastic Charlie Card...How about a vending machine that can provide the plastic card?”
Hey guys, lets spend HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS to solve problems created by inept management decisions, rather than technological limitations. ''

Oh and the 2014 Apple Keynote called. No one actually wants to pay with their phone.
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Old 11-20-2017, 08:57 AM   #3
Ruairi
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post

Oh and the 2014 Apple Keynote called. No one actually wants to pay with their phone.
Maybe but I'd love to be able to top up my Charlie card on line.
I was in London a few months ago and was very impressed with their system. The way bank cards work with the system is great.

I'd be delighted if in 2021 there actually will be new orange/red/green cars and a new GLX as well as being able to pay by tapping my credit card.

Toll 93 to pay for it
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:13 AM   #4
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

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Maybe but I'd love to be able to top up my Charlie card on line.
Whats stopping you?
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:21 AM   #5
Ruairi
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

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Originally Posted by jass View Post
Whats stopping you?
Huh, well there ya go! Never knew you could do that!
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:28 AM   #6
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

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Originally Posted by Ruairi View Post
Huh, well there ya go! Never knew you could do that!
Yup, the issue is management, not the technology.
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:42 AM   #7
JeffDowntown
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Yup, the issue is management, not the technology.
Regardless the technology choice, it is still going to take a major investment to outfit all the buses and Green Line cars with all door payment/boarding; outfit major bus stops with payment machines for totally cashless payment on buses and green line, and get whatever technology onto Commuter Rail and Ferries for seamless usage.

Those are not just management issues, those are capital expenditures.
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:49 AM   #8
estyle
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Re: AFC 2.0 Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement System

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mongo View Post
New details released:

http://www.masslive.com/news/index.s..._youll_be.html

Some highlights:

Unified fare system

In and out gates, mainly for the commuter rail

ALL DOOR BOARDING ON BUSSES AND GREEN LINE

Pay with phone or card

Fully implemented by May 2021

More details here:

https://d3044s2alrsxog.cloudfront.net/sites/default/files/2017-09/2017-09-18-afc2-procurement-update.pptx

A couple of things that interested me about this were: using and existing, proven system. Hallelujah! Seriously, the need of the T to reinvent things instead of adopting systems that work is mind boggling. I'd love a tap in tap out as well.

And why is the cost for the T so much higher than the much larger system in NYC? Is their base technology better and the T has a bigger step to make?

And, as a rare user of commuter rail, the app for buying tickets is really impressive. It is simple and clear. Kind of shocking given how confusing the basic T fare information is, I frequently find myself helping out visitors who are baffled by the signs in T stations.
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:53 AM   #9
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDowntown View Post
Regardless the technology choice, it is still going to take a major investment to outfit all the buses and Green Line cars with all door payment/boarding; outfit major bus stops with payment machines for totally cashless payment on buses and green line, and get whatever technology onto Commuter Rail and Ferries for seamless usage.

Those are not just management issues, those are capital expenditures.
Most of the T's bus fleet is younger than Charlie, and additional new busses keep joining the fleet. A good chunk (most?) of the GL rolling stock is also younger than Charlie and many of the older trolleys (all of them?) have been totally retrofitted since Charlie. Also, new GL cars are on their way.

The T should have started requiring all new busses and GL cars to have back door Charlie readers 10 years ago. This shouldn't be one big project that we have to undertake starting in 2018. If only the T had a little bit of foresight and proactive management we would have all door boarding today.
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Old 11-20-2017, 10:00 AM   #10
jass
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
to outfit all the buses and Green Line cars with all door payment/boarding
Why?

Why cant we go back to the system where people with passes board through the back and people who need to tap board through the front?

Remember why that system was removed?

Management, not technology.

Quote:
outfit major bus stops with payment machines for totally cashless payment on buses and green line
Why?

Whats wrong with the existing system where you can reload your Charlie Card at CVS, Shaws, 7-11, etc?

Besides the fact that nobody knows about this because of shit management.

Quote:
and get whatever technology onto Commuter Rail and Ferries for seamless usage.
Spending a few hundred million last time didnt get us the result, why will this few hundred million do it?
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Old 11-20-2017, 10:07 AM   #11
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruairi View Post
Huh, well there ya go! Never knew you could do that!
You can load money online, but you must tap it at a fare gate in a rapid transit station first. You cannot load money online and then tap it on a bus. This makes adding stored value online a nonstarter for people who have bus to subway commutes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MBTA
Please Note:
To receive your CharlieCard purchase(s) tap your CharlieCard at a Fare Vending Machine or a subway Fare Gate after 5:00 AM tomorrow. You can also update it at T sales offices at Back Bay, Downtown Crossing, Harvard, North Station and South Station.

https://charliecard.mbta.com/Charlie...rlieCardIV.jsf
Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Why?

Whats wrong with the existing system where you can reload your Charlie Card at CVS, Shaws, 7-11, etc?
When eliminating cash on board, you can't expect to have the only option to pay cash at major stops be in retail locations. You should be able to buy it at the stops. These proposed stops are like the major squares, not every stop.
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Old 11-20-2017, 10:57 AM   #12
JeffDowntown
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Why?

Why cant we go back to the system where people with passes board through the back and people who need to tap board through the front?
How can you tell someone has a pass on a Charlie Card without tapping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Why?

Whats wrong with the existing system where you can reload your Charlie Card at CVS, Shaws, 7-11, etc?
If the T expects the system to go cashless, then it needs to provide purchase options, close to transit, in all neighborhoods (major squares, transfer points) -- these options are not readily available in many of the hoods that need transit the most.
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Old 11-20-2017, 10:59 AM   #13
dwash59
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Whats stopping you?
If you use the bus or green line above ground, this isn't an option. So, someone in Allston cannot add money to their card while at home and then hop on the train.

They can go to Tedeschi's or Lee's 2 and add value though.
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:04 AM   #14
datadyne007
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDowntown View Post
How can you tell someone has a pass on a Charlie Card without tapping?
You would need fare inspectors on board and an aggressive fine structure, but that is literally the definition of POP. The T already has handheld validators (albeit a very small number) that they use occasionally at Longwood Medical Area during the afternoon school rush as well as at Fenway during Red Sox games.

Tap targets at the rear doors as part of AFC 2.0 will allow people with stored value to enter back there too, speeding everything up even further. There will also be full POP enforcement on-board vehicles.
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:07 AM   #15
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by datadyne007 View Post
You would need fare inspectors on board and an aggressive fine structure, but that is literally the definition of POP. The T already has handheld validators (albeit a very small number) that they use occasionally at Longwood Medical Area during the afternoon school rush as well as at Fenway during Red Sox games.

Tap targets at the rear doors as part of AFC 2.0 will allow people with stored value to enter back there too, speeding everything up even further. There will also be POP enforcement on board vehicles.
Key element of tapping in everywhere is getting more accurate boardings data. It is hard to improve service without solid data on usage (tapping out would be even better, and allow zone fares).
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:10 AM   #16
dwash59
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
Oh and the 2014 Apple Keynote called. No one actually wants to pay with their phone.
I use apple pay every time I shop at Stop & Shop, Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Marty's Big Buys, etc. It is a great option. But it is a high stress option for getting on a green line trolley or bus as it sometimes is finicky.

I would prefer my Charliecard works like my EZPass. Put some money in the account and it automatically refills as needed.

That said, I think you would see a good amount of usage of contactless/Apple Pay on the T. Not wanting to wait for chips on their credit card has familiarized many with the option.
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:32 AM   #17
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

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Originally Posted by datadyne007 View Post
You should be able to buy it at the stops. These proposed stops are like the major squares, not every stop.
The PPT says machines in Zone 1A and "major bus stops" only.

Almost every major bus stop is shared with subway (Kenmore, Harvard, Haymarket) so theres no guarantee there will be any machines in the outer stops.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDowntown View Post
How can you tell someone has a pass on a Charlie Card without tapping?
Same exact way you will have to verify in the future that people actually tapped.... by using the handheld scanners the MBTA already owns.

Remind me, how did that go when PoP was implemented on the entire D line?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDowntown View Post
Key element of tapping in everywhere is getting more accurate boardings data. It is hard to improve service without solid data on usage (tapping out would be even better, and allow zone fares).
Agreed, more data is great.

But is more data worth $200m when you can get it using a billion other systems like automated counters?


BTW, can someone remind me why Charlie was never added onto Ferries?

The fare structure is identical to that of the express buses....so why cant they just stick in the same exact fare boxes?
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:41 AM   #18
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Also, I'd bet money that no cash on board buses gets held up in a lawsuit related to a disparate effect on minority communities.
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:50 AM   #19
datadyne007
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

Quote:
Originally Posted by jass View Post
The PPT says machines in Zone 1A and "major bus stops" only.

Almost every major bus stop is shared with subway (Kenmore, Harvard, Haymarket) so theres no guarantee there will be any machines in the outer stops.
I read that very differently. I read that as key high ridership/transfer points like Saratoga St - Central Square in Eastie and Broadway - Bellingham Square in Chelsea, for example on the 116/117 corridor. There are plenty of major stops with high boardings that are not connected to rapid transit.

Regardless, a lot of people are raising concerns about the T having the appropriate number of cash machines spread around the system. Good ol Louise Baxter from the TRU and Marc Ebuna from TransitMatters both gave public comment about this exact thing today. At TransitMatters, we'll be ensuring that we review proposed locations as they become known and offering advice on locations of cash machines. Louise specifically asked that the T start the outreach right now to people who pay in cash to educate them on the future options so they are ready for the transition.
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Last edited by datadyne007; 11-20-2017 at 12:02 PM.
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Old 11-20-2017, 12:02 PM   #20
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Re: Charlie Card/MBTA Fare Replacement system

How great would it be if the next generation of lottery terminals could also top up Charlie Cards? Those blue things are in practically every single convenience store/gas station/packie/grocery store across the Commonwealth (with PLENTY of coverage in less economically-advantaged areas), and they all tie remotely into a central government-run system to securely make sales.

If they're currently designing a replacement, maybe it'd at least be worth getting the T on one of those calls? The lottery and the T are both Massachusetts government entities, after all...
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