[LINK] Vic transport smartcard to cost $1bn

Bernard Robertson-Dunn brd at iimetro.com.au
Wed Feb 6 12:52:24 EST 2008

Russell Ashdown wrote:

> Tom Worthington wrote:
>> The Victorian system seemed to be workable when I tried it 
>> <http://www.tomw.net.au/blog/2007/05/victorian-public-transport-contactless.html>. 
>> But transport smartcard projects frequently have problems, where the 
>> transport companies fail to rationalize their fee structure before 
>> implementation. We should not be surprised that the Sydney one has 
>> failed, or that the Victorian one appears to be about to, but that 
>> some, such as Perth, seemed to have worked
> This trivialises the problem with implementing a system-wide integrated 
> ticketing system over multi modes of transportation.

I'm of the same view as Russell, although I don't know as much as he 
does of the Sydney system.

Having recently been in London and experienced their Oyster Card system, 
it was primarily designed for the underground railway with some 
extensions to the central London bus system. Above ground rail was not 
included, neither was a ferry system. The Sydney system was supposed to 
deal with many more travel modes and a much larger geographic area, 
including (for the Ferries) the harbour/river from Parramatta to Manly 
and (for the trains) Wollongong to Gosford.

Similarly, my memory of the Hong Kong System was that it only covered 
the MTR ie a single, well connected environment, (mainly) underground 
system. No buses, no trams, no Ferries.

My comments earlier this week, in the context of the 2020 summit, about 
  projects going wrong at the business case stage apply just as much to 
the TCard. I believe that they made the assumption that the system was 
very similar to those implemented elsewhere, whereas in reality there 
are fundamental, significant, project-breaking, differences, but nobody 
working on the business case understood, and (I'm guessing here) no 
decision maker wanted to hear.

There's a technical term that describes this sort of situation - SNAFU.



Bernard Robertson-Dunn
Sydney Australia
brd at iimetro.com.au

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