Auckland ticketing project stalled by review

NZTA reviews procurement process and funding

A contract to build an integrated ticketing system for public transport in Auckland is on hold, with no resolution likely in the near future.

The system is contingent on 60% funding from the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA).

“We’re pretty much there otherwise,” says Auckland Regional Transport Authority (ARTA) spokeswoman Sharon Hunter.

NZTA spokesman Andy Knackstedt says NZTA’s review of the procurement process and associated funding requirements is continuing.

“The NZTA board’s consideration of funding for the implementation on the Auckland integrated ticketing system, has been deferred till the review is complete,” he says.

ARTA had hoped to award the contract before Christmas, but programme director Greg Ellis said in January that the contract was going through statutory hoops.

There are three contenders for the contract – Infratil, Thales and Downer EDI – which is expected to be worth around $40 million initially, then more than $100 million over 10 years.

Ellis says the local body changes, which will see the Auckland Regional Council abolished and Auckland become a “super city”, would have no effect on the contract.

In March, Infratil chief executive Marko Bogoievski told the Dominion Post he was “dumbfounded” that ARTA would consider a more complex and more expensive option, after it was reported that Thales was the front-runner for the contract.

Another Infratil executive, Tim Brown, said the company was confident the deal would not go ahead without sign-off from the NZTA.