Summit tackles transport disruption

By: Chris Thompson, Photography by: Scott Ehler (TTF), Cubic


Photo: Scott Ehler Photo: Scott Ehler Photo: Scott Ehler
Bill Young and Paul Monk, Cubic Bill Young and Paul Monk, Cubic Bill Young and Paul Monk, Cubic

The 2016 TTF summit had a focus on tech changes in the public transport industry

The 2016 Tourism and Transport Forum Australia (TTF) summit, held at the Westin in Sydney on August 26, brought Australian – and international – public transport leaders together to discuss dealing with changes in transport technology.

A poll released by the TTF a day earlier showed around 30 per cent of public transport users – particularly younger people – were willing to pay more for more advanced services.

Almost 70 per cent of commuters said they liked improvements such as transport smart cards like Myki or Opal.

Delegates at the summit took to this theme strongly, as redevelopment and transport improvements were among the most frequently covered topics of the day.

Cubic Transportation Systems Australia was the event partner, and had set up a display of their recent developments currently being used in Chicago.

Vice president of global engineering at Cubic Paul Monk gave ABC Magazine a demonstration of the Ventra ticketing and travel system now being used in the US.

Monk says the system could be used anywhere in the world, and is relatively inexpensive as the hardware only needs Bluetooth and a connection to the server.

Information is stored in a database rather than on the card or phone.

Monk says the money in a Ventra account could also be used for other purchases, as it is essentially a prepaid MasterCard.

Other international delegates included Gerald Francis, general manager of Keolis North America commuter services, who told stories of Boston’s public transport facing the challenges of a snow storm

‘Customer first’ program director of Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) Paul O’Kelly talked delegates through how he and a small international team is restructuring the way Ireland’s rail system works both internally, and for its customers.

Also part of the summit were three panels covering technology use in transport, government project delivery, and public transport’s impact on the economy.

Subscribe to get the full brief of the summit in ABC’s upcoming September issue.

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