SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Discussion relating to Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (Philadelphia Metro Area). Official web site can be found here: www.septa.com. Also including discussion related to the PATCO Speedline rapid transit operated by Delaware River Port Authority. Official web site can be found here: http://www.ridepatco.org/.

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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby andrewjw » Sat Nov 04, 2017 2:33 am

There has been significant deployment of Key validators (for proof-of-payment) to many outlying stations including most of the Trenton Line. A "ring of steel" (to borrow from the MBTA thread) is going up at Market East and one will likely go up at each other other center city stations. Some stations including Market East platforms and Overbrook, have what look to be fare reload machines which can add value to a Key card but not issue a new card.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby JeffK » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:42 am

andrewjw wrote:Some stations including Market East platforms and Overbrook have what look to be fare reload machines which can add value to a Key card but not issue a new card.

I expect major stations will eventually allow sales as well as reloads, but based on what I heard at the fare hearings perhaps one-third of all outlying stations won’t offer sales points. Aside from inconveniencing riders, that deficiency puts a wrench in SEPTA's claims about "getting cash off the trains" because conductors will still have to handle possible cash payments.

[/cynicism] of course it also means they’ll continue to get extra revenue from the $&#%! on-board surcharge.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby NorthPennLimited » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:01 pm

Maybe the ticket agent at the station can reload your Key card.

Just hope he/she shows up for work on time before your train leaves the station.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby JeffK » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:58 pm

NorthPennLimited wrote:Maybe the ticket agent at the station can reload your Key card. Just hope he/she shows up for work on time before your train leaves the station.

I hope you intended a /sarc tag, haha! Except for CC, most stations with agents are only open on weekday mornings - not even as much as what used to be called "bankers' hours". The remaining ~30% of outlying stations don't have any sales facilities at all. In an ideal world those stations would be a high priority for full-function kiosks but I'm willing to bet that instead, they'll be the ones that get nothing.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby NorthPennLimited » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:07 pm

A few years ago SEPTA had THE WORST ticket agent at Lansdale. She never opened up the ticket office on time, she was miserable, and her sales transactions were so slow, your feet grew cob webs waiting at the window.

I felt bad for them. They earn just over minimum wage, and work enough hours below the threshold to avoid qualifying for health benefits. But this one.......she was downright miserable to deal with. I used to pray for the day her job would become automated.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby jamesinclair » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:54 pm

Will people still be able to purchase tickets at NJ Transit machines for use from Trenton to Philadelphia?
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby NorthPennLimited » Mon Nov 06, 2017 7:42 pm

jamesinclair wrote:Will people still be able to purchase tickets at NJ Transit machines for use from Trenton to Philadelphia?


And follow up to that question;

Has there been any construction to build fare validation machines for trains terminating / originating from Amtrak lower level 30th Street Station platforms? I can't imagine Amtrak is warm and fuzzy about an iron curtain in their station as we have seen at Jefferson & Suburban Stations.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby ExCon90 » Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:20 pm

From what I've seen so far, the (what to call them?--they won't be turnstiles as such) are being installed at the foot of the stairways from and to the upper-level platforms in such a way that people can move between the main concourse and the CIRA Centre and parking garage without passing through barriers. There are no barriers for access to the lower level; the only time SEPTA trains would use the lower level would be in the case of temporary diversions such as the one coming up shortly involving CP ARSENAL, requiring Wilmington and Airport trains to use the lower level. If such diversions become necessary after the tapdance is imposed I suppose they will just have a temporary arrangement with people checking "fare instruments" at the LL stairways. Now if Amtrak ever wants to run Keystones to Suburban Station that opens up whole new vistas of complexity.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby hgondilon » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:42 am

As far as I know the only places where fare vending machines will be installed is in center city. These was discussion of putting them at every station back in 2011, but it was nixed due to concerns about the cost of maintaining the machines. The ones that are being installed in center city will sell cards as well as reload them.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby sammy2009 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 2:22 am

If anything since they are not putting them at all the railroad stations...then possibly at least put them at the end of the lines terminus.

*Trenton
*West Trenton
*Wilmington
*Newark
*Media
Just a few...esp The stops in NJ, DE. Well Trenton already sells the SEPTA TICKETS ON THE NJT Vending machine.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby tgolanos » Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:06 am

sammy2009 wrote:...Just a few...esp The stops in NJ, DE. ...


Just a thought- Since the stations in Delaware are owned by DelDOT, would they be able to install their own SEPTA Key fare machines? Or would this be SEPTA-dependent since it's their fares?
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby dcipjr » Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:18 am

I was in Market Eas—ahem, Jefferson Station, the other day, and saw that turnstiles are in place there, though they aren’t actually functional yet. In Suburban, gated areas seem to be under construction.

Interesting that the gates seem to keep the “theme” of each station—Jefferson’s gates have the tiled designs that look like the tiles on the wall of the station, and Suburban’s gates are painted a brass color. A nice touch by SEPTA.

Vending machines are aplenty on the platforms at both stations.

The stations I use for service to Center City both have the Key card readers intalled, though they’re inactive at this time.

Does anyone have a ETA on when the Key might actually be usable on the railroad? It seems like they must be getting close. Springtime?
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby andrewjw » Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:30 pm

dcipjr wrote:I was in Market Eas—ahem, Jefferson Station, the other day, and saw that turnstiles are in place there, though they aren’t actually functional yet. In Suburban, gated areas seem to be under construction.

Interesting that the gates seem to keep the “theme” of each station—Jefferson’s gates have the tiled designs that look like the tiles on the wall of the station, and Suburban’s gates are painted a brass color. A nice touch by SEPTA.

Vending machines are aplenty on the platforms at both stations.

The stations I use for service to Center City both have the Key card readers intalled, though they’re inactive at this time.

Does anyone have a ETA on when the Key might actually be usable on the railroad? It seems like they must be getting close. Springtime?


On-platform tap-on/tap-off readers are now installed at many (most?) outer lines. I have seen zero evidence of gate construction at 30 St, though there are now machines there.
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby R3 Passenger » Tue Jan 30, 2018 4:37 pm

dcipjr wrote:Interesting that the gates seem to keep the “theme” of each station—Jefferson’s gates have the tiled designs that look like the tiles on the wall of the station, and Suburban’s gates are painted a brass color. A nice touch by SEPTA.


I visited Suburban Station today, and the gates do look nice with the brass, but I still don't agree with them.

But, I got to thinking what 30th Street's gate theme would be. On the ramp up to the Regional Rail, there is a lattice along the outside of the Old Nelson shop with the PRR logo. Maybe the 30th Street gates will match that? Would be a nice touch and throwback!
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Re: SEPTA NPT card will be "SEPTA Key"?

Postby nova08 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:35 am

I had my first experience with the Septa Key system this past weekend to the Villanova game at Wells Faro. Only did a quick trip so not the actual card you'd load and use regularly. It really feels like a system that should have been implemented 10-15 years ago. While it was easier than the ancient "kick and punch the machine" coin system, it was not without issues. In today's technology I'd expect to be able to buy a ticket with an app and simply swipe my phone at a gate.

1.) I did a quick trip, but really wanted a roundtrip ticket (City hall - Pattison roundtrip). I saw no indicator on the screen to get a roundtrip as opposed to one-way. Subsequently, I was left waiting in a line 10 deep for the ~4 machines total around Pattison to get a ticket back into center city.

2.) Two of the machines I tried, one at City hall and one at Pattison did not accept the thicker "semi metal" credit cards. The card simply does not go in all the way presumably because the slot is too small.

3.) The quick trip paper tickets did not properly swipe at the gates for two of us. One guy tried about 10 times until it finally worked. After I tried a few times, an agent just took my ticket and had an open gate I walked right through.


Positive:
I give major props for Septa for having enough workers, even for a simple Villanova game, to help people. And the workers were pretty friendly/helpful.
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