The introduction of an integrated ticketing system for public transport in Auckland will greatly enhance service and convenience for the travelling public, says the NZ Transport Agency.
The first step in the staged introduction of HOP smartcard for Auckland was announced today by Auckland City’s Mayor, Len Brown, with dates of the rollout to be advised shortly.
Integrated ticketing using a single standard smartcard accepted on all public transport services is a major step forward in convenience, providing cost and time savings for commuters and more effective and accurate ways to gather fares and patronage data, says NZTA’s Auckland regional director, Stephen Town.
“The convenience of the HOP smartcard may well prove the point where many commuters opt for public transport and leave their cars at home,” says Mr Town.
He says the launch of the Auckland ticketing system has national implications as it forms the basis for national ticketing standards and implements core transport ticketing infrastructure which can be used for the whole of New Zealand.
The NZTA has partnered with Auckland Transport planners for some years now on the Auckland integrated ticketing programme, including development of a parallel national programme, as well as developing NITIS, a national standard which enables integration with other ticketing equipment and transport service providers.
The system’s capital cost is $60 million, with a ten year operating cost of $80m. The NZTA is providing a $42.95m share of the capital funding, and Auckland Transport is providing a $15.3m share. The NZTA is also funding $20m for the central (national) system to provide for expansion, and for the inclusion of transport services in other regions.
The initial planning for integrated ticketing started in 2006 and the system tender was released in late 2007, to ensure Auckland and eventually the rest of the country received the best and most cost efficient system available.
The contract to introduce integrated ticking was signed with Thales NZ in December 2009 by the former Auckland Regional Transport Authority, now managed by Auckland Transport.
Mr Town says congratulations are due to Auckland Transport, the system providers and to all the transport partners and companies for working so successfully to bring this system to Aucklanders, and soon to other New Zealand centres.
“The NZTA is delighted that the first stage of this system that will revolutionise public transport travel will be rolled out in time for the Rugby World Cup,” says Mr Town.
Additional information about the HOP smartcard is available at, www.myhop.co.nz(external link)