For Immediate Release
Bay Area Transit Operators Extend TransLink® Pilot Program
New BART faregates to be TransLink® compatible
Russell Driver, MTC
John Goodwin, MTC
Mike Healy, BART
OAKLAND, Calif., Oct. 11, 2002...The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC)
announced today that all six of the Bay Area transit operators participating in the Phase I
demonstration of the TransLink® regional fare
payment system have agreed to extend the pilot program while their respective boards decide whether to
proceed with Phase II, which would involve implementation of the TransLink® "smart card" system
throughout the operators’ route and station networks. These decisions are expected within the
next few months.
The six operators participating in the TransLink® pilot program include AC Transit, BART, Caltrain,
Golden Gate Transit, San Francisco Muni and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA).
While the distinctive green TransLink® cards are not yet compatible with the new faregates BART has
begun installing throughout its station network, cardholders will be able to enter the BART system via
TransLink® equipment installed on older-generation faregates in nine test stations, or by tagging
their cards at TransLink® readers and using the swing gates adjacent to the agent booth. Because
the faregates are being replaced one station at a time, some passengers may end up using an agent booth
card reader at one end of their trip and a faregate card reader at the other end. Information on how to
use TransLink® on BART will be distributed next week to all TransLink® pilot program
cardholders, and can be accessed immediately online by visiting the TransLink® Web site at <www.translink.org>.
The agreement by the six transit operators to continue their participation in the TransLink® pilot
program comes just weeks after the September release of an MTC-commissioned evaluation of the
TransLink® demonstration. During the original six-month demonstration period that ended July 31,
some 3,000 passengers tested the TransLink® system on portions of the Bay Area’s rail,
light-rail, bus and ferry network. The report shows that trial user satisfaction with TransLink® is
very high, no insurmountable technical problems emerged, and that passengers and transit agencies alike
found the accounting to be accurate.
"We’re pleased that all six operators want to keep the pilot program going," said MTC Chair
Sharon Brown. "The demonstration has been so successful that cardholders’ single biggest
complaint by far is that the system isn’t available everywhere."
MTC has contracted with Motorola, Inc. and ERG Limited to implement and operate the TransLink®
fare-collection system. MTC is the transportation planning, coordinating and financing agency for the
nine-county Bay Area.
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