SEPTA Hosts Potential Vendors For New Payment Technology System
PHILADELPHIA, PA, December 17, 2008–SEPTA’s Request for Proposals (RFP) to design its new “smart card” fare payment technology has attracted interest from vendors as far away as France, Spain, Germany, China, Korea and Turkey.
More than 80 interested parties, including leaders in the fields of telecommunications, global technology and banking, visited SEPTA this week for two days of station and facility tours.
The vendors gathered for a brief overview of the project and an informal question and answer session on Tuesday before heading out to various SEPTA locations today (Wednesday).
The two-day event was organized to provide vendors with a better understanding of how SEPTA’s New Payment Technology (NPT) is to be integrated into its current infrastructure. Wednesday’s tour included travel aboard the SEPTA system to observe its stations, garages and parking lots as well as information gathering on SEPTA’s current sales and revenue collection system.
SEPTA issued its RFP in early November and will accept proposals until March 17, 2009. In soliciting proposals, SEPTA is encouraging bidders to include innovative financing plans as a means for SEPTA to pay for the project. Following an evaluation process, SEPTA expects to award a contract in June or July.
SEPTA expects its NPT to offer passengers several payment options which would provide “contactless” transactions through a bank card, cell phone or SEPTA-issued card.
The contactless technology would allow riders to pass their fare instruments over card sensor readers enabling the user to travel SEPTA buses, subways, and trains while eliminating traditional payment forms such as tokens and magnetic swipe cards.
In submitting proposals for the NPT, SEPTA is also encouraging vendors to develop regional compatibility with other area transit providers such as PATCO and NJ TRANSIT.
SEPTA’s new fare system is a part of its five-year strategic business plan. Design, testing and installation of the technology are expected to take at least three years.
SEPTA information is available online at http://www.septa.org or by calling the SEPTA Customer Service Department at 215-580-7800.
SEPTA Public Relations