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51 Metro Transit found that the juvenile courts do not treat fare evasion very seriously, with few consequences to the individual for the crime. Special Event Operations The Hiawatha Light Rail Line provides access to Target Field, the Metrodome, the University of Minnesota, and the Mall of America, making special event ridership high. Dur- ing these high-volume times, ticket booths are open with personnel selling paper tickets. They also assist unfamiliar passengers when necessary. For Northstar, usually all fares are inspected as passengers board the train after special sports events. Future Changes Under Way or Under Consideration Metro Transit is considering acquisition of new handheld verification devices for its officers, ones that would be faster, more robust, and store data about frequent offenders. NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK--NEW YORK CITY TRANSIT (NYCT) NYCT is an affiliate of Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). The focus of this case study is NYCT's SBS. The SBS is the brand name given to NYCT's BRT services. Two SBS routes are presently operating in two arterial street corridors: Bx12 SBS route (Fordham Road/Pelham Parkway) link- ing the northern part of Manhattan with the Bronx. The Bx12 was the initial SBS route, with service implemented in June 2008. Daily ridership on this service is approxi- mately 28,000 over 27 stops. In addition to the SBS ser- vice, there is a parallel Bx12 local service. This route is shown in Figure 27. M15 SBS route (First Avenue/Second Avenue) operating on the east side of Manhattan. This upgraded BRT service was initiated in October 2010. Approximately 34,000 aver- age daily riders use this route over 40 stops. There is also a local M15 bus route that operates in the same corridor. The M15 SBS route is shown in Figure 28. The branding of the SBS goes beyond its name: The buses FIGURE 27 NYCT Bx12 SBS route map. are three-door, low-floor, articulated, and are "wrapped" in a unique design displaying "+selectbusservice." The fronts Application of Proof-of-Payment Fare Collection of the buses have blue lights (instead of amber) that flash on both sides of the destination sign. The SBS stops have A decision to use PoP for SBS routes was based on the objective special shelters with TVMs (locally called MetroCard Fare of enhancing the operating speed of the service by allowing Collectors, or MFCs). The buses operate in exclusive bus all-door boarding and eliminating the necessity of fare collec- lanes that are painted red and marked "Bus Only" on over- tion and inspection by the driver. Thus, for the Bx12 and M15 head gantry signs. routes, boarding passengers can use all three doors of the artic-

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52 mining whether the SBS routes would achieve its objectives. Also recognized were challenges presented with application of PoP and the off-board fare collection process: PoP was a new concept for New Yorkers. The PoP fare collection process with off-board fare purchase and random inspection was a new concept for NYCT customers. There was a mix of transit operations in the two corri- dors. The PoP fare collection applied to the SBS routes but not to the local routes. All SBS riders required a printed receipt. Even riders with valid monthly or weekly MetroCards were required to approach an MFC and have a PoP receipt printed. MetroCards and Proof-of-Payment Application Of these challenges, the one of most concern was how to handle MetroCards because they are the medium by which fares are paid in New York City. The first MFCs that were used for SBS were engineered to read and deduct fare from MetroCards. Subway station MetroCard recharge machines (known as MetroCard Express Machines, or MEMs) were repurposed to replicate a bus farebox. Printed paper receipts were given as PoP because NYCT did not want to use hand- held verification devices, which could have been stolen and private information retrieved. The result was that NYCT required that all fares be paid off-board for every ride, and that a printed receipt indicating the time and date be in the possession of the boarding passenger. Ticket Vending Machines/MetroCard Fare Collectors To assist with off-board fare payment, there are MFCs at each of the SBS bus stops. For the two SBS routes, there are a total of 140 MFCs, typically two at each stop. There can be up to five MFCs at the busiest stops and just one machine at the final boarding location in a particular direction. The MFCs have no utility to someone without a MetroCard. Dis- cussed below are the two types of PoP machines: The MetroCard Fare Collection machine (approximately $27,000 each) accepts MetroCards, electronic paper transfers, and single-ride tickets. It is important to note that customers with MetroCards must insert their card into the MFC, acting strictly as a validator, to acquire a PoP receipt. It takes 3 to 5 s for a MetroCard user to process the card and get a receipt. FIGURE 28 NYCT M15 SBS route map. MetroCards are not sold on BRT platforms. The MFC machines use AC power and have an internal heater. Trenching 100200 ulated bus if they have valid PoP. However, passengers paying ft for power made installation of these machines challenging. cash and needing a transfer must pass by the driver, show their PoP receipt, and request a paper transfer receipt from the driver. The Coin Fare Collection (CFC) machine (approximately $7,000 each) accepts exact fare payment in coins for full fare, For these new services, the effective use of PoP fare col- reduced fare, and the half-fare student MetroCard. There is lection was recognized by NYCT as a key factor in deter- typically one CFC at each stop and a total of 72 in use. Accept-

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53 ing coins only without change capabilities has not presented a problem because only approximately 5% of riders on SBS use cash. Those who pay cash are likely on reduced fares. These machines are solar-powered, which made installation at stops easier than for theAC-powered MFCs. An early problem with the MFCs was caused by their not being weatherproof. Thus, shelters for the MFCs had to be constructed. The shelters caused a different set of problems during rain and snow conditions when there was often conges- tion among passengers trying to retrieve their PoP receipt and those waiting for the bus. These problems have been resolved as NYCT has procured new MFCs that are weatherized. Issues with Parallel Local Routes FIGURE 30 NYCT SBS An SBS bus operator's duty is to drive, operate bus doors, and MetroCard payment receipt. issue transfer receipts for cash customers. Generally, the local bus service stops near every SBS station. An unexpected situ- Public Information Regarding Proof-of-Payment System ation has occurred at these joint stops. Some SBS riders will take the bus that arrives first. This situation has been resolved Prior to beginning revenue service on the two SBS routes, by NYCT having a verbal policy that the local bus service will extensive public information efforts were put into place. accept PoP receipts as payment; there are about 400 cases of A campaign was launched to inform riders of the new off- this each day of the 60,000-plus SBS riders. board PoP fare collection system that would accompany the SBS routes, including the fines for evasion of fare payment. Fare Media Used and Availability A "show of force" was also part of the initial weeks of The fare media used on the SBS routes are divided into two dis- service. There were two facets to this "show": Partly, it was tinct MetroCard groups, plus a modest number of cash riders: to demonstrate heavy use of inspection/enforcement person- nel on the routes, and partly, it was to provide information Approximately 50% of SBS riders use 7-day or 30-day to riders through use of "customer ambassadors" who were unlimited ride MetroCards. stationed in SBS stop platform areas. These ambassadors were used during the first 2 weeks of service to help with Approximately 43% of SBS users use a pay-per-ride introduce PoP and to explain the benefits of the faster, more (stored-value) MetroCard. These can be used to ride all reliable BRT service to riders. On the Bx12 route, a third subways, local buses, and express buses. An automatic free week was added when school started because a high number transfer is given between subway and bus or between buses of students ride this route. within 2 h of paying a fare. There are no transfers from sub- way to subway or to the bus route on which a rider starts. On the M15 line, a greater number of customer ambassa- dors were required because there were more SBS stops than Cash fare payment comprises about 5% on the two SBSs, on the Bx12 SBS line, along with differing characteristics a percentage that is lower by about one-third than that for the of the corridor. It was not possible for one person to moni- entire NYCT bus system. tor both a north- and southbound stop. One thousand shifts were covered over 15 days. In contrast to the experience Figures 29 and 30 display two types of PoP receipts for a with the Bx12 route, riders on the M15 route expressed more coin payment and for a MetroCard user, respectively. resistance to the new service and the changes it brought. A primary issue was related to high passenger volumes at key stops, forcing customers to stand in queues at the MFCs and CFC machines. As riders have become more familiar with the machines, the processing times have improved and the queuing has been less of an issue. There are ongoing efforts to provide information to riders about PoP with signs on and in the buses to alert and remind FIGURE 29 NYCT SBS coin passengers that PoP is required before boarding. Plus, all the payment receipt. SBS MFCs are wrapped with clear instructions about how

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54 to use PoP (in English, Spanish, and Chinese). The wraps pronounce the message in bold fashion (see Figure 31): Speed Your Ride PAY BEFORE YOU BOARD Use all 3 doors to board the bus Keep your receipt. FIGURE 32 NYCT "Eagle Team" fare inspectors on duty. monses would be issued. Thus, the people NYCT eventu- ally hired were experienced law enforcement personnel with FIGURE 31 PoP information on NYCT MetroCard fare good communication skills and with a demonstrated ability collectors. to de-escalate problems when they arose. Fare Enforcement Function Over the first 3 years of SBS operation, NYCT found that one supervisor is required for every five inspectors. The NYCT Department of Security manages the fare Regular daily fare inspection consists of two 8-h shifts enforcement for the SBS routes. The initial request for fare with two "Eagle Teams" of three inspectors, one for each enforcement assistance was to the New York City Police door. Fare inspectors can issue summonses on either the Department (NYPD), which declined. Next, the MTA Police bus or sidewalk stop area as long as fare evasion was Department was surveyed and also declined. In both cases, directly observed. If someone is boarding the bus without insufficient resource availability was the primary reason for PoP, fare inspectors will typically provide assistance and declining the requests. educate the passenger. Fare inspectors engage an average of 3,500 to 4,500 riders per day. With the PoP concentrated As a result, the NYCT Department of Security was on two routes, the inspectors have become familiar with directed to develop a plan for fare enforcement and decided many of the regular riders as well as with any trouble spots to expand its successful "Eagle Team" for this purpose. This along the routes. team had been assembled initially to combat graffiti vandal- ism and other crimes of mischief directed at transit property. No summons are issued to anyone under the age of 16 The inspectors do not carry firearms and call the MTA or years. If a minor is caught without proof of valid fare pay- NYPD if help is needed. Figure 32 shows two inspectors ment, then the youth is taken off the bus, sometimes police from NYCT's Eagle Team. are called, and other times the parents are called. NYCT's process of creating a fare inspection force was Heavy loads are experienced on the SBS routes every day, arduous and included recruiting, interviews, and background and the inspectors have developed ways to inspect despite checks for each potential candidate. The new hires had to the crowds. One method is for the fare inspectors to remain have law enforcement, security, or military experience that on the bus and travel two or three stops away from the maxi- was consistent with the duties expected for fare inspection mum load point and resume inspection as the crowding and enforcement. There also was an emphasis on hiring indi- diminishes. Another technique is for the inspector to check viduals who, from experience, were expected to understand passengers as they disembark the bus. An example of "Eagle how to deal with the public in situations during which sum- Team" inspectors boarding a bus is shown in Figure 33.

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55 also lower than the systemwide average. The highest evasion rate during the day was 8.6% and occurred in the afternoon between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. After Studies In August 2010, fare evasion was studied for the Bx12 SBS route. The result showed a fare evasion rate of 6.1% as com- pared with the before rate of 13%, which reflects more than a 50% improvement. In spring 2011, an after study of the M15 SBS was conducted. Fare Evasion Methodology An approach to measuring fare evasion was developed with a 95% confidence level and an error range of 2.6%. The approach, developed with the help of the MTA audits staff, uses a "surge" deployment of inspectors. During a surge, a team of inspectors in plainclothes boards a bus, has all doors closed, and asks to see PoP of all passengers. No summonses FIGURE 33 NYCT "Eagle Team" fare inspectors boarding are issued in order not to unduly delay the bus. The fare eva- NYCT's SBS. sion rate is then calculated by dividing the total number of passengers inspected by the number of passengers without Fare Evasion valid PoP. Before Studies Fare Inspection and the Use of Discretion For purposes of measuring performance, NYCT completed The NYCT prepared an SOP on the "Use of Discretion When special studies of fare evasion rates on the SBS routes prior Enforcing Fare Evasion Rules on MTA NYCT Bus Routes." to PoP implementation (32, 33). The philosophy underlying this SOP is to "skillfully educate the public on proper fare payment" and "get passengers into Bx12 Fare Evasion Results --About 82% of all Bx12 rid- the habit of paying their fare" (2). ers observed in June 2008 (i.e., pre-SBS implementation) paid a valid fare (accepted by farebox), and another 5% of The SOP is designed to address the use of discretion and the riders boarded under miscellaneous categories (e.g., cases in which no discretion is permitted. Training includes flash pass, uniform, badge, broken farebox, dispatcher per- specific, illustrative scenarios known to have been encountered mitted boarding with no fare payment). The remaining 13% by inspectors. Included is a NYCT definition of fare evasion: boarded under illegal circumstances, paying either a partial fare, an invalid fare, or no fare at all. This 13% fare evasion Fare evasion is the act of purposely attempting to ride a rate was found to be high compared with the bus systemwide New York City Transit transportation device without having average of 8.6%. paid for said ride. When disaggregating the data, it was found that about Transit Adjudication Bureau half of all Bx12 evaders were concentrated in five locations, indicating that fare evasion counts tend to be higher at cer- The MTANYCT Transit Adjudication Bureau (TAB) has tain busy locations. With regard to time of day, the highest existed since the 1980s with the objective to deal with graf- evasion rate, approximately 18%, was observed during the fiti, turnstile jumpers, and illegal parking near facilities. peak hours of 3 p.m.7 p.m. New York State Public Authorities law established TAB in Title 9--Section 1209-A (34). There are 10 sections that M15 Fare Evasion Results--About 93% of all M15 riders define the role of the authority; explain when default deci- observed in June 2010 (i.e., preoperation of SBS) paid a valid sions can be made, the hearing process, and the appeal pro- fare. About 0.5% of the riders boarded under miscellaneous cess; and give the bureau power to enforce civil penalties for circumstances (flash pass, uniform, badge), and the remain- violations of laws, rules, and regulations. ing 6.5% boarded under illegal circumstances, paying either a partial fare, an invalid fare, or no fare at all. Compared Initially, fines for fare evasion were set at a minimum with the Bx12, this evasion rate was lower by one-half and of $65. With introduction of PoP in 2008, the penalty was