Besançon Unveils Integrated Ticketing System for Tramway

Besançon, France, June 29, 2012. The French town of Besançon (pop. circa 177,000) sits close to the country’s border with Switzerland and was once proclaimed the ‘first green city of France’ thanks to its lush verdant surroundings. Recent improvements to the city’s transport network are helping to bring this reputation into a new era as the city becomes even greener environmentally.

At a press conference on the 29th June held within Besançon’s Town Hall, Mr. Jean-Louis Fousseret, the city’s Mayor, and his deputy Mr. Jean-Claude Roy (in charge of transport and infrastructure) were joined by representatives from Vix Technology France and Parkeon France to unveil a new public transport ticketing system to coincide with the arrival of the city’s new tramway.

Until recently, the city’s ‘Ginko’ network comprised urban and suburban bus and coach services. With the imminent arrival of the new tramway, however, local authorities identified a need for an improved payment system that would allow passengers to change from one mode of transport to another during a journey without the inconvenient requirement for multiple tickets.

When it came to designing and delivering such a system, the local authorities chose two expert partners who have together worked on over a dozen similar projects in France: Vix Technology and Parkeon.

According to Mr. Norbert Schuwer, General Manager of Vix Technology France, the choice was a highly pragmatic one:
“Coincidentally, both Vix and Parkeon have offices in Besançon but it was our track record of working together on many similar urban projects in France and beyond that gave us the edge”.

As part of the project, Parkeon will be providing a range of ticketing machines for use on platforms and at tram stops. Vix Technology will be supplying the on-vehicle validation devices and the back office systems to manage both payments and the fleet of vehicles.

The new ticketing system will see the gradual introduction of contactless smart cards that can be used to pay for transport, helping Besançon phase out traditional, wasteful paper tickets. The system has also been designed with the future in mind, and will enable customers with NFC-compatible (Near Field Communication) smartphones to use these mobile devices to buy and use transport rights in future. This contactless technology is particularly exciting for Norbert Schuwer. “Commuters all like the idea of an improved urban environment, reduced congestion and fewer cars on the road but this can only be achieved when public transport is fast, efficient and reliable. Contactless technologies like NFC have a big role to play in realizing this vision and their carbon-cutting potential is significant”.

For further information please contact:

Stuart Russell, Mobility Marketing Communications Manager
Phone: +44 (0)1223 697016