Bait and Gate – The Fare Gate Scandal Unfolds

Well, Rail for the Valley told you so, but with the hoopla in the mainstream media and on certain radio station, to a certain lobbyist’s delight, fueledAi??a public frenzyAi??on the subject of fareAi??evasion. So much so, was the public’s anger over fare evasion, the public demanded fare gates be installed at all SkyTrain stations. The fact of the matter was different, the percentage of people avoiding to pay fares was about the same as on other transit systems. Fare evasion is a cost of doing business.

Should not this study have been done before TransLink wasted hundreds of millions of dollars retrofitting the mini-metroAi??stations with fare gates?

The real winners in the fare gate fiasco is Cubic, who supplied the fare gates in a market that is seeing most transit agencies ridding themselvesAi??of them and former premier Gordon Campbell’s good friend and former Vancouver City manager under the Campbell regime (who’s thumbprint is behind many of TransLink’s expensive fiascoes) and Cubic highly paid lobbyist, Ken Dobel!

I think we can call it “bait and gate!”

The fare evasion/fare gate fiasco is just another reason why there should be a full independent audit of TransLink, including the light metro system.

Memo to Adrian Dix: Do you have the moral fortitude to order such an audit?

Study finds transit fare gates don’t curb crime
Janet Brown

Fare gates on public transit systems have very little impact on fare evasion, crime and public disorder.

That’s the finding of a study carried out by Criminologist Darryl Plecas at the University of the Fraser Valley.

Plecas says while the introduction of turnstiles and fare gates is perceived by the public as a panacea to deal with fare evasion it’s really not the answer.

He also says there is little data to suggest the gates have a measurable impact on crime and/or public disorder.

“These gates are very expensive to install and when you look at how long it takes to get the payback from what you lose on fair evasion i think that at least some people conclude that at the end of the day they certainly don’t pay for themselves.”

The study – which cost five-thousand dollars – was commissioned by Transit Police whose role is already being questioned once the fare gates come in.

The first fare gates on Skytrain and Canada Line are expected to up and running in the fall.


One Response to “Bait and Gate – The Fare Gate Scandal Unfolds”
  1. Justin says:

    Most transit systems are getting rid of faregates? I like your blog, and I am pro-LRT, but agencies are not getting rid of faregates. Why would they?

    Zweisystem replies: Fare gates and turnstiles are very expensive to maintain (TransLink estimates that the annual cost to maintain and operate the new fare gates is between $20 million to $25 million annually, which includes the wages of the new attendants who must watch the fare gates!) and with new chip encoded cards, merely passing a fare stage or station or tapping the card against a reader, the correct fare is taken from the card. Conductors are now equipped with devices to ascertain customers who have fare cards and if they have been paid to ride the system. Simply, fare gates are fast becoming a historical footnote, superseded by the chip encoded fare card.