NineSquared was engaged by Transport Canberra to help them develop their public transport ticketing roadmap which would detail the investments that they would make over the next 5 years in the ticketing system. The ticketing roadmap had to address the planned introduction of light rail in 2018-19 as well as the replacement of the existing ‘card-based’ ticketing system used on board buses throughout the national capital.
Working closely with Transport Canberra staff, NineSquared reviewed the existing state of ticketing, both as deployed in Canberra as well as looking at national and international trends in ticketing and the payments industry. Our review included estimating the cost of ticketing as a percentage of fare revenue collected, an assessment of the strategic importance of Canberra as a ticketing customer and an assessment of the preferred approaches to:
- Design and technology – this is largely a choice between proprietary technology or open standards
- The desired fare system architecture – that is where does the fare and ticketing system undertake the processing of fares
- The desired payments architecture – how will customers be able to pay for their use of the system. Will customers need specific fare media (that is, closed loop) or will they be able to access a range of potential fare media (open loop)?
These choices were assessed against Transport Canberra’s strategic and operational requirements and the outcomes were used to develop a detailed roadmap and implementation plan for future strategic investment in Canberra’s ticketing system.