The BC Transit fleet will be receiving several upgrades in the future including digital payment technology. (Black Press Media file photo)

Digital payment options on horizon for BC Transit in Greater Victoria, timeline unclear

BC Transit is ‘taking the time to get it right,’ says a spokesperson

BC Transit is in the process of upgrading to allow digital payment options on Greater Victoria buses but it will take time.

In 2018, the federal government announced that B.C. would receive more than $136-million in funding from the Canadian government, the provincial government and from various local governments. The funding would allow five transit upgrade projects to be carried out across the province including adding more than 100 new buses to the BC Transit fleet, building 100 new bus shelters and equipping almost 800 buses with GPS tracking.

READ ALSO: Victoria will be one of the first cities with GPS tracking, digital fare on BC transit buses

In February 2019, the transit company began rolling out GPS tracking technology in Greater Victoria to allow passengers to track their buses in real-time through their cell phones.

As part of the upgrades, $21 million was allotted for adding a cashless fare system to the BC Transit fleet.

This will permit transit-users to use bank cards or phones to pay for bus tickets, explained Coun. Susan Brice, Saanich councillor and chair of the Victoria Regional Transit Commission.

Greater Victoria is set to be the first region to see the digital payment options on-board BC Transit buses, but eventually, the whole fleet will be equipped, Brice noted.

In January 2019, the transit company issued a request for proposals for digital fare technology and its installation on buses, explained Jonathon Dyck, spokesperson for BC Transit. In April, the tender was cancelled due to issues staff found with the requirements listed in their request. Dyck emphasized that staff will be reviewing and reworking the request and it will be reissued “at a later date.”

Initially, BC Transit had hoped to have the digital fares installed in 2020, but the cancellation of the initial request for proposals will impact the timeline, Dyck said. Once the new request for proposals is complete, an estimated completion date will be clearer.

READ ALSO: $136M in transit funding coming to B.C.

“We know it’s a project customers have been asking for and BC Transit wants to work on it,” Dyck said. “We’re looking forward to getting it in place but are taking the time to get it right.”

Dyck emphasized that physical tickets and cash payment options will not be taken away as some patrons prefer those methods of payment.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Six months to Francophone Games, 600 volunteers needed

Online applications open on Jan. 14

Tech consortium invests $25 million into four University of Victoria research projects

Investments come with goal of developing, implement technologies created by Canadians

Organizers seek input for long-awaited Oaklands community garden

Oswald Park Community Garden Design Workshop coming up on Jan. 19

Improperly transporting a pet in the back of the truck can cost up to $368

Police recommend keeping all animals inside the passenger portion of the vehicle

Mass-timber project in Esquimalt switches from condos to rentals

Corvette Landing will now offer rental units in the area

After cashing in on QB gambles, Chiefs and 49ers to clash in Super Bowl

KC beats Tennessee, San Francisco dispatches Green Bay to reach NFL title game

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

Most Read