The South Australian state government late last week called for companies to express their interest in building its planned new public transport ticketing system.
(Credit: Government of
"Getting the ticketing system right is a key component of this government's $2 billion public transport revolution announced in this year's state budget," the state's Transport Minister Patrick Conlon said in a statement on Friday.
The smart card technology, which works by touching a card to a reader to deduct a fare electronically, will be installed in around 1,000 vehicles and numerous transport facilities across Adelaide.
When announcing the expressions of interest process, Conlon alluded to problems other states have had with similar systems, such as NSW's Tcard recently being cancelled, and returning in an expressions of interest process last month, and Victoria's Myki running over budget and behind schedule.
"We've seen the process go wrong in other states at a huge cost and we've learned valuable lessons," he said. Inspiration could come from Brisbane's go card or Perth's SmartRider projects, which are working smart card systems.
The government has not rushed into going to market for the system. When the plan to move to electronic ticketing was announced, the South Australian government had been working on the specifications for the ticketing system for over a year.
The expressions of interest advertisements have been placed in the media and will be lodged on the government's tendering website www.tenders.sa.gov.au. The expressions of interest stage will close on 25 November, although the proposals will not be evaluated until 2009.