Cubic Transportation Systems has been selected as the preferred bidder by the San Francisco Metropolitan Transportation Commission to deliver what it calls the next-generation fare payment system to the Bay Area.
Cubic is the system provider and operator of Clipper®, the regional fare program for 22 transit agencies in the region which will be modernised under the new programme.
Cubic says the next-generation system will include new features including an integrated mobile app that will support a virtual Clipper card, enabling customers to access real-time information, top up their accounts, plan trips and tap their phones through faregates and on buses in much the same way as mobile payments can be made at retailers.
Stored value and pass purchases made online and via the mobile app will be instantly available to users. The system will also be made open-payment ready for the acceptance of contactless bank cards and mobile wallet technologies as acceptance grows in the U.S. payments market should the region decide to pursue this option.
“We are extremely proud to be recommended as the preferred bidder of such an important initiative in the Bay Area,” said Bradley H Feldmann, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Cubic Corporation. “The vote to proceed to award for MTC’s future payment system reflects our continued commitment as to winning the customer by driving growth through innovation for more efficient operations and increased convenience in transportation payments for our customers.”
“We will be honoured to continue our relationship with MTC that began in 2009 when we took over the system to design, operate and maintain the rebranded Clipper system,” added Matt Cole, president, CTS. “The recommendation to advance us to the next board review as the preferred provider confirms our partnership, as well as the MTC’s trust in us, to deliver on the new technologies where we are the market leader, including account-based fares, mobile payment, mobile ticketing and open payments. This also includes maintaining our history at the helm of the business and operational services that keep the Clipper system in check day in and day out to provide excellent customer service.”
“Over the last several years, the MTC and the regional operators have made investments in the existing Clipper system that Cubic will leverage to bring new features and benefits early, such as mobile and new bus devices, while the longer-term upgrades to the back office are completed,” said Matt Newsome, vice president and general manager-Western Region, CTS. “Our solution will offer the full range of payment and account management features we are delivering to major cities around the world, including London, New York, Boston, Brisbane and Chicago.”
Cubic adds that each of these new technologies will be powered by its real-time communications and data analytics supporting the company’s account-based architecture. This technology model opens a variety of new potential partnerships between transit, bike share, ride share, car share, parking and other vertical transportation services falling under the Mobility-as-a-Service model.
MaaS, the concept of shared-use mobility, is gaining traction for moving people away from reliance on their personal vehicles and becoming more open to using both public and private transportation. MTC and Bay Area transit operators are looking to MaaS to address first-mile/last-mile options that the Cubic next-generation system could support.
Cubic’s solution will operate the new system in partnership with its cloud services partner Microsoft. Microsoft will provide a range of financial, analytic and customer management software integrated by Cubic into the overall system.
The recommendation will then be considered September 14 by MTC’s Operations Committee and then by the full Commission on 26 September.