PrestOttawaSome things cannot be paraphrased, and must be repeated verbatim. Here is the recommendations summary of a report presented to Transit Committee and to City Council in the City of Ottawa on November 13, 2007:
SUBJECT:Yes, you read it correctly:
SMARTCARD FARE SYSTEM
SYSTÈME DE PAIEMENT PAR CARTES À PUCE
1. That the Transit Committee recommend that Council approve Transit Services joining the Greater Toronto Area Fare System (GTAFS) project with a view to full implementation of the Presto smartcard system in Ottawa by 2010 subject to the following conditions having been met by April 1, 2008:
· Provincial Cabinet approval of the proposal presented to OC Transpo by Ministry of Transportation staff as described in this report;
· Successful negotiation of central system fees to enable OC Transpo to reduce overall commission to approximately one percent;
· The STO Commission reaching a funding agreement to proceed with a technology upgrade; and
· Signing of the GTAFS Procurement Governance Agreement, the GTAFS Operating Agreement and the GTA Funding Agreement.
2. That the Transit Committee recommend to Council the delegation of authority to the Director of Transit Services to act on behalf of the City to approve and execute the GTAFS partnership agreements.
3. That the Transit Committee recommend Council approval of these recommendations be contingent on approval in the 2008 Capital Budget of an increase in project authority from $15 million to $21.200 million, recognizing that the actual cost to the City will be $15 million (or less) as a result of Provincial funding and the potential for Federal funding, as a result of the ability to integrate STO operations.
City staff is recommending that OC Transpo, the city of Ottawa's transit system (which has an excellent system that I had the pleasure of riding this past summer), sign on to Presto, the GTA fare card. They are not simply suggesting that they develop their own fare card, they are recommending that OC Transpo implement the Greater Toronto Area Fare System.
The part of this story that takes it from being odd to being hilarious is that if all goes well, they will be able to fully implement the system by 2010 - a system which the Toronto Transit Commission doesn't expect to fully implement until 2015, according to reports this past fall.