The city of Reims faced two major issues: stiflingly congested roads which caused significant inconvenience and inefficient connections between the city centre and its conurbations and the remote HST “EST Europe” station.

To give new dynamism to the city and to make the outskirts more accessible, the Public Transport Authority invested in an environmentally-friendly public transport network. In addition to the existing bus services, the tramway became a key innovation in 2009 due to its speed, frequency, comfort and accessibility.
To make the project as efficient and cost-effective as possible, the Reims authority commissioned MARS (Mobilité Agglomération Rémoise) to design, construct and operate the transport network.
Under this public-private partnership – the first of its type in France – MARS placed its trust in the TRANSDEV group, renamed CITURA, for the operation and in Alstom-Transport for the systems, networks and rolling stock.
Eager to provide a quality-focused service to customers, MARS chose to place technology at the heart of the unique system by bringing together various private and public means of transport and offering a whole range of features to improve access for passengers and a simplified network operation. The whole project was to be carried out within an ambitious timetable.

Parkeon smart solution

Based on its impressive proven experience of technologies related to transactional solutions and its recognised expertise in project management, Parkeon was awarded the contract by Alstom-Transport to provide the whole automatic fare collection system.
Two contactless ticketing platforms were developed to enable passengers to travel all over the CITURA Bus-Tram network: one for occasional travellers and the other – the ‘GRAND R’ smartcard – for regular users.

The ticket is rechargeable and sold on buses, tramways and at the 46 ASTREO vending machines installed in stations and accessible 24/7. Millions of passenger journeys are made on the network every year. Both single tickets and ‘GRAND R’ subscriptions can be recharged.
To extend the distribution network to a wider audience, 115 Point of Sale Terminals (POS) have been placed in public offices, at authorised depositories or resellers.
The punctuality of the service is ensured by a smooth and fast boarding process through contactless validation of tickets using the 518 AXIO on-board validators. Control agents use Parkeon’s portable equipment to inspect tickets during journeys.

To help reduce traffic congestion, Park-and-ride facilities are offered on the basis of combined parking and transport tickets. AXIO validators drive exit barriers once a transport ticket used during the day is presented.
Finally, as a real mobility manager, Parkeon’s TransFolio platform guarantees the continuity of all the services. It includes a set of applications to manage fares and the CITURA network and ‘GRAND R’ smartcards over their full life cycle; to control all the front-end distribution and validation equipment and to process banking transactions through the ArchiPEL clearing system, including direct debits.
Revenue and usage statistics are reconciled to better understand and improve the CITURA multi-modal network operation while optimising cost to manage and maintain the system in operational conditions.

The benefits

This large-scale public/private partnership ticketing project has been successfully implemented in line with the original functional, technical and organisational commitments and went live in April 2011.

All services required to manage the various urban means of transport in the area are provided via an integrated system, managed through a single point of contact to optimise efficiency and cost effectiveness.
Parkeon’s easily accessibly multi-modal ticketing system meets the needs of passengers and provides the operator with reliable operating data.

Parkeon has also been contracted to provide maintenance services for the entire infrastructure provided. The purpose of this partnership is to guarantee the sustainability of the investment, optimise operating costs and increase transport revenue.
The ticketing project of Reims has underlined Parkeon’s position as a recognised specialist in Automatic Vending Terminals, to that of an essential stakeholder of comprehensive turnkey ticketing solutions. It has been followed by many success stories in many cities, including Angers, Le Havre and many cities around the world.

  • Multi-modal management of bus, tramway and park-and-ride networks

  • Fruitful cooperation between Alstom-Transport and Parkeon

  • Control of development, deployment and maintenance processes

  • Comprehensive integrated ticketing solution