September 15, 2017
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Industry Briefs

TMA Group Receives State Award — The TMA Group’s VanStar regional commuter vanpool program in Franklin, TN, recently received a Tennessee Sustainable Transportation Award from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation in partnership with Tennessee DOT. This program serves hundreds of commuters throughout 14 counties and benefits the environment by eliminating ­vehicle miles traveled, air pollution and gasoline use.

SFRTA Recognized for Procurement Efforts
 — The South Florida Regional Transportation Authority, ­Pompano Beach, recently received the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials’ Award of Excellence in Public Procurement for the tenth time. The authority was one of only 12 agencies in the state to receive the award this year.

Metrolink’s Corporate Partner Discount — Metrolink commuter rail in Los Angeles is offering a first-time-ever 25 percent discount to new participants in its Corporate Partner Program, a commuter employee benefit program, in honor of the system’s upcoming 25th anniversary. This program provides new corporate partners who can register through Jan. 1, 2018, with 25 percent off all ticket and pass types purchased for a six-month period. The discount is then passed along to the employees of these companies.

One Billion Contactless Trips in London — Cubic Transportation Systems and its partner, Transport for London (TfL), recently reported reaching the one billion mark for pay-as-you-go trips using contactless bank card and mobile payments across London’s transportation network. The program entered service in 2012 and, according to TfL, passengers complete an average of two million trips each day using contactless payments.

VIA’s App Offers Trip Planning, Mobile Ticketing
 — VIA Metropolitan Transit in San Antonio, TX, recently introduced “goMobile,” an app that allows passengers to purchase fares using a smartphone and activate the fares when they are ready to ride. The app, powered by moovel North America, also provides bus arrival information to help riders plan their trips. It is available for free download for Apple and Android devices.

FHWA Award Honors St. Louis Metro — St. Louis Metro and Bi-State Development recently received an honorable mention in the 2017 FHWA Transportation Planning Excellence Awards, also sponsored by the American Planning Association, for their development and planning of the North County Transit Center in Ferguson, MO. The opening of the transit center led to a complete transformation of the MetroBus service plan for north St. Louis County, one of the region’s fastest-growing transit markets.

SamTrans to Promote Youth Mobility — The San Mateo County Transit District (SamTrans), San Carlos, CA, is preparing a plan to enhance youth awareness of and ease of access to its bus services. The plan may include creating a youth mobility coordinator position; establishing a transit youth ambassador program; launching a pilot expansion of the Way2Go Program, which currently allows organizations and residential communities to purchase annual unlimited-ride passes for all eligible employees or residents; increasing social media engagement on numerous platforms; and enabling purchase of youth fares via a mobile ticketing app.

‘EZAlerts’ in Cincinnati — Cincinnati Metro launched its new Cincy EZAlerts service, a free web-based system that alerts ­riders via text message or email when a rider’s specific bus is detoured or experiences a service disruption.

 — The Stark Area Regional Transit Authority (SARTA), Canton, OH, recently received a certificate of appreciation from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in Ohio. TSA noted that the certificate “recognizes SARTA’s continuing partnership with TSA to improve transportation security, their commitment to safeguard the traveling public and willingness to participate in risk mitigation efforts with other security professionals.”

RTD Supplies Wi-Fi at Union Station Facility
 — In response to customer requests, Denver’s Regional Transportation District (RTD) has begun offering free Wi-Fi in the Union Station underground transit center through XFINITY by Comcast.

INIT Receives Chesapeake Business Award
 — The Chesapeake (VA) Economic Development Authority honored INIT Innovations in Transportation Inc. with its 2017 Chesapeake Business of the Year Award. Reasons for the recognition included company growth, community involvement and investment in the city, including construction of INIT’s new headquarters building.

Interactive Site for High-Speed Rail News — The California High-Speed Rail Authority introduced, an interactive site that provides information about construction in the state’s Central Valley and opportunities for small businesses to get involved.

Contactless Fare Technology in Edmonton Region
 — Three municipalities in the Edmonton, Alberta, metropolitan region entered into a 15-year contract with Vix Technology to implement a new advanced regional smart fare solution. Vix will design, build, operate and maintain the common contactless fare payment system, which will allow seamless fare payments among all modes of transportation in the three municipalities.

Free Rides for Parents with Strollers
 — The San Joaquin Regional Transit District, Stockton, CA, recognized National Parents’ Day by providing free rides for parents traveling with infants or toddlers in strollers. The agency distributed special “We Rode for Free Because of Me!” stickers to children.

Sinclair Students Ride Free in Dayton
 — The Greater Dayton (OH) Regional Transit Authority has introduced a new, semester-long pass for students, faculty and staff at Sinclair College starting this fall thanks to a new partnership between the college and the agency. Many of Sinclair’s 30,000 students and more than 3,300 employees rely on public transportation.

Harrisburg Buses Are ‘Safe Places’
 — Capital Area Transit (CAT), Harrisburg, PA, has begun training its operators how to respond to issues including human trafficking, domestic violence and runaway youth as part of its “Buses Are Safe Places” program. According to the National Safe Place Network in Louisville, KY, CAT’s program is the first in the nation that includes training above and beyond assisting runaways.

Omnitrans Expands ­Service to Ontario ­Airport
 — Omnitrans, San Bernardino, CA, now provides service to Ontario International Airport every 15 minutes, stopping near baggage claim at both passenger terminals. Another Omnitrans route ­operates hourly.

St. Louis Metro Goes Smoke Free
 — All St. Louis Metro transit center properties in Missouri and Illinois are now entirely smoke-free, including both indoor and outdoor areas, park-and-ride lots, stations, platforms and on board vehicles.


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