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BusExpert32

Go Lane Dumping

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There will be a lot of confusion at first, but this switch is for the better.

Yes, I think it's a good move for the CTA to dump the go lane. Alot of times, if you have a customer in the go lane and the next customer pays with a transit card or pass you'll end up with both paying at the same time and the farebox cannot accept two payments at once, and you have to explain to the customer that they need to yield to the other customer and it just slows down the whole boarding process. Also as a customer, people in the go lane feel it is an express lane and I have seen them actually push transit card riders out of the way. For some riders they would refer to that as the rude lane. :lol: BTW, looking at CTA's interests, they could be looking to the future when all transit cards and passes will be paid at the farebox with smart card technology, but that most likely would be tied in with the new fareboxes for the buses that I believe are on the way for 2011. It's been talked about in the past, but I think it's a matter of whether it can fit in the budget or not, unless it can be paid for with a federal grant.

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... BTW, looking at CTA's interests, they could be looking to the future when all transit cards and passes will be paid at the farebox with smart card technology, but that most likely would be tied in with the new fareboxes for the buses that I believe are on the way for 2011. It's been talked about in the past, but I think it's a matter of whether it can fit in the budget or not, unless it can be paid for with a federal grant.

At the time of the Auditor General's report, CTA said that, despite having said for years that it needed new fareboxes, the transition of most riders to one type of card or the other resulted in that not being a priority, and, of course, the subsequent decision not to issue transfers with cash bus fares also drove people away from paying cash fares.

You are undoubtedly correct that whatever CTA next uses will be tied to the bank smart cards. However, given that they are just studying that, and I don't believe that they have put out requests for proposals for implementation, I wonder if it is too early to speculate.

My previous idea was to have card vending machines on the buses, but that wouldn't eliminate the need to deal with the cash in the machines' vault. I'm starting to think that CTA might be going in the direction of not accepting cash at all, and if you ride, you have to buy the equivalent of a "gift card" at your local bank, currency exchange, Jewel, or Dominicks, if you don't have the chip embedded debit or credit card. That might be a slightly larger P.I.T.A. than going to exact fare in the 70s, but not much.

My guess is that we will have to wait 18 months to find out.

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The Go Lane elimination is really moving along. I first noticed it expand to North Park buses and now it's working its way through the buses at Kedzie.

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I'm glad the Go Lane is being eliminated. In my opinion, it does nothing but take up space and it blocks the doors getting on the buses.

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I'm glad the Go Lane is being eliminated. In my opinion, it does nothing but take up space and it blocks the doors getting on the buses.

How does the Go Lane block the doors? What space is "gained" by getting rid of it?

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It doesn't matter that much where the Chicago Card reader is if it's at least there for the CTA to collect money off of the Chicago cards. Today, FG Nova 6721 was doing runs without it at all. A lot of money is lost by the CTA with incidents like this. I guess it was taken off from its spot opposite the driver, and someone forgot to put it back on the farecard machine.

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How does the Go Lane block the doors? What space is "gained" by getting rid of it?

The problem is that the passenger cannot immediately see if the card has been read in the Go Lane. This results in them standing to see if the driver says anything or going into the bus and getting called back if it hasn't. In both of these cases it blocks the flow of other passengers not using Chicago Cards. It would have worked better if there was a positive notification at the reader that it had been registered. I know the lights flashed but I could never tell what that meant!

On at least one occasion I have been charged twice because of this, however cta did credit my Chicago card after I questioned the charge

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The problem is that the passenger cannot immediately see if the card has been read in the Go Lane. This results in them standing to see if the driver says anything or going into the bus and getting called back if it hasn't. In both of these cases it blocks the flow of other passengers not using Chicago Cards. It would have worked better if there was a positive notification at the reader that it had been registered. I know the lights flashed but I could never tell what that meant!

On at least one occasion I have been charged twice because of this, however cta did credit my Chicago card after I questioned the charge

I've seen alot of lost revenue, simply because the card did not read correctly and the rider was never called back. Also riders when they come back feel they are paying twice. Based on the beeps heard your card is accepted or not. If you can remember the tone you'll know what happened whether it was accepted or not. The way it used to be set up required alot of trust on part of the rider because you couldn't see the balance unless you leaned over the farebox. It was good they changed it. Now if they could only do something about the disappearing dates on the transit passes. If you should forget your date of expiration when you put the pass in the card reader on the buses it will show you when the pass expires. One rider once told me she puts scotch tape over the date on the card to solve that problem. I've never tried to use a pass like that on a farebox but to me it would seem to screw up the card reader.

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