PARIS Transport Authority and French National Railways’ Ile de France business announced on July 11 that they had selected two suppliers for a programme to introduce smart card ticketing across the city’s metro, rail and bus networks.

RATP has awarded a Fr60m contract to Ascom for the conversion of around 2000 gates on the metro network to accept contactless smart cards. This work is to be completed by July 2001, with several different types of gate controller to be adapted. SNCF has selected Schlumberger Technologies to supply the cards and the ticket validation equipment at a cost of Fr40m.

Over the next four years, smart cards will gradually replace weekly, monthly and annual season tickets and passes, starting with the Intégrale and Imagine R cards in 2001. Emeraude and Améthyste cards will change in 2002, and Carte Orange in 2003-04. Eventually, multi-ride metro carnets will also be replaced by stored-value smart cards. In total, the two operators expect to issue around 3 million cards (RG 3.00 p167).