Bloomington-Normal’s bus system is making it easier for customers and drivers to handle fares. Connect Transit is installing 53 automatic fare boxes, one on every fixed route and Connect Mobility bus. Public Outreach Coordinator Gabe Goldsmith says the electronic fare collection system includes mobile ticketing via smart phones and cards with magnetic strips, similar to those issued by parking decks.
"It's not necessarily the end of cash with these new fareboxes. It'll be a lot more secure. There are less hands handling the money this way," said Goldsmith. "People are still allowed to pay with cash."
Goldsmith says the system will prevent farebox evasion, reduce fare disputes with drivers, and offer more payment options for customers.
Connect Transit is using $954,000 in state grant money to pay for the $1.2 million dollar system. Customers will begin seeing the new fare boxes in 3-4 months.
The system is also implementing some route tweaks beginning today.