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October 28, 2013

TARC wants feedback on new fare collection system

System allows passengers to pay with the tap of a smartcard

JEFFERSONVILLE — TARC unveiled its plans for a new fare collection system and wants to know what the public thinks about it.

The regional bus transit system is holding a series of public comment meetings to collect input on plans for a new fare collection system that is scheduled to begin operating this summer.

The system will allow passengers to pay for their rides with the tap of a smartcard when they board. Fares will not increase and cash — exact fare — will remain a payment option.

“This is a major upgrade to a modern fare collection system,” said J. Barry Barker, Executive Director at TARC, in a press release. “With a smartcard, riding TARC will be faster and easier. The smartcards will also offer the best deals on fares, just as pre-purchased tickets and passes do today.”

Smartcard payments will replace paper tickets, passes and transfer slips which will be discontinued. Free transfer trips will remain available with smartcards but will be discontinued with cash fares, under the plans, because drivers will no longer distribute paper transfer slips.

“The new system will also provide TARC with better information for planning routes and schedules to meet passenger needs,” Barker said.

Passes purchased on smartcards will provide unlimited rides for a specific time period beginning with the first use of the pass to pay a fare, unlike paper passes now used which provide rides only on a specific day or during a specific month, according to the release. TARC plans to begin offering 24-hour, seven-day and 30-day passes with the new system.

TARC3 paratransit vehicles will not be part of the initial system but are expected to be phased in at a later time.

Although the new system is months away from operating, Barker encouraged passengers to “let us know what you think.”

Details about the plans, including a draft fare policy that will govern the new system, are available at ridetarc.org. Comments will be carefully reviewed and taken into consideration by the board of directors before fare collection system decisions are final.

Public comments will be accepted through Nov. 21. Comments will be accepted via email at info@ridetarc.org; by phone at 502-561-5112 or TTY at 502-213-3240; by mail to TARC, 1000 W. Broadway, Louisville, KY 40203 (attn: Janene Grantz); and on Facebook facebook.com/ridetarc or Twitter twitter.com/ridetarc.

In addition to the comments being collected, TARC will also host a series of eight public open house meetings. Those include:

• The meeting Nov. 13 will be held from: noon to 2 p.m. at the Jeffersonville Township Library Clarksville Branch, 1312 Eastern Blvd., in Clarksville, accessible by TARC Route #82

• A meeting will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 16 in the Centennial Room at the main branch of the Louisville Free Public Library, 301 York St., in Louisville, accessible by TARC Routes #4, #6

 

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