Metro Tasmania's chief executive has conceded its ticketing technology is old and needs replacement.
Katie Cooper told a goverment business enterprise scrutiny committee on Tuesday that Metro's Greencard, introduced in 2009, did not allow users to tap on and off like they could on public transport in other states.
She said there was a process underway to replace the system.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Infrastructure Minister Michael Ferguson said the Greencard was at the end of its life.
"We do need to move to a more contemporary ticketing arrangement," he said.
Mr Ferguson said it was hoped a new ticketing application could be created that could be used by Metro bus travellers as well as travellers with other public transport providers.
The committee heard Metro would go into debt for the first time due to increased costs related to COVID-19, decreased fare revenue, and a fare amnesty for bus users at the height of the pandemic.
Metro chairman Tim Gardner said the shortfall in fare revenue was expected to remain over the next few years.
He said part of the $18 million debt facility would fund new capital investment as part of its new 10-year plan for vehicles and technology.
The last of the 100 new Tasmanian-built buses under its fleet replacement program is due to be delivered in May 2021. Mr Ferguson announced on Tuesday that Metro would extend its contract to purchase another 26 buses to also be built at Elphinstone in Wynyard.
He said the $12.2 million investment would enable the continued direct employment of more than 20 people in the North-West.
He said the buses could be converted to battery electric or hydrogen fuel.
What do you think? Send us a letter to the editor: