BMRCL, BMTC working on common mobility card

BMRCL, BMTC working on common mobility card

DH file photo for representation.

Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara put the spotlight back on the common mobility card, a single source to pay for the metro and BMTC rides.

He announced that the two corporations are working on the project, pushed to the backburner after much lip service and publicity.

The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) smart cards are based on a closed-loop technology that allow passengers to pay only for metro rides, while the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) smart card, launched last year, works on an open-loop technology and can be used like a debit card for all transactions.

The difference in technology was cited as a reason for shelving the project, but Parameshwara said the BMRCL has decided to come to an understanding with BMTC to bring out a common fare card.

"Discussions will be held with transport department officials immediately after the byelections," Parameshwara said.

BMRCL spent nearly Rs 120 crore to install the payment gateway system in its Phase 1 stations. Asked how the corporation would bridge the technology chasm, its managing director Ajay Seth said it is exploring several solutions.

"A clear picture will emerge after the meeting," Seth said. "Some of the best minds in software technology are in Bengaluru, who we can invite to suggest solutions. It is better to solve the problem before investing in the Phase 2 infrastructure."

Last-mile connectivity

Discussions were held on bridging the last-mile connectivity with the BMTC's help.

"More people will board the metro if we deploy small buses, with a 30-seat capacity, to bridge the last-mile gap. This will improve the situation where only people within a 1-km radius around stations are using the metro," Parameshwara said. 

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