MBTA Bus Farebox (Scheidt & Bachmann)

S&B was contracted by the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) in Boston to provide a complete, integrated, modern fare collection system that had uniform equipment and interfaces across all modes of transit.

The farebox is a complete piece of cash and financial transaction handling equipment for Bus and Light Rail. It represented a cornerstone of the $90M CharlieCard project for the MBTA.

The farebox integrates almost all of the user facing elements of both the subway gates and the subway ticket vending machines - all in a housing that is on fifth to one tenth the size of either of these. It was designed to function in a moving vehicle with exposure to the extremes of New England weather.

System components integrated within the farebox include:

  • a paper bank note handling system
  • a coin handling system
  • a non-contact smart card handling system
  • a magnetic ticket reading and writing system that could also issue magnetic tickets for change transactions and transfers
  • a passenger UI
  • a bus operator UI
  • a secure cash box system
  • a secure wifi system for connection to the fare system network while the bus is in the garage
  • a dedicated power management system