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

Hazardous black ice coats Greater Victoria streets

Drivers, cyclists, pedestrians warned to be cautious

Victoria byelection scheduled for April 4

The byelection will replace former Coun. Laurel Collins

Saanich councillor feels new Walmart at Hillside a step in the wrong direction

‘We’ll all fail our climate goals if we don’t make radical changes to land use,’ says the councillor

Tell Me A Story returns to Oak Bay

Family Literacy Week starts Jan. 27

Fashion Fridays: Look your best this year

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

POLL: Has the recent snow had an impact on your daily life?

Old Man Winter had Greater Victoria in his icy grip this week.… Continue reading

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 14

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

‘Scariest boat ride of my life’: Passengers trapped by ice on rocky B.C. ferry sailing

The Nimpkish docked in Bella Coola on Jan.12 coated in a thick layer of ice

Canada to give $25,000 to families of each Canadian who died in Iran plane crash

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also made it clear that Canada still expects Iran to compensate victims

Oil and gas industry applauds top court’s dismissal of B.C.’s Trans Mountain case

The high court’s ruling Thursday removes one of the remaining obstacles for the project

Sub-zero B.C. weather freezes clothing in just 45 minutes

A local photographer decided to have some fun with the frosty weather before its gone

VIDEO: Missing cat reunited with Vancouver Island family after three months

‘It was like one day she was there, the next day she was gone,’ said owner

Most Read