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Single-Ride Rail Fares Could Cost $3 When Ventra Launches

By Chuck Sudo in News on Feb 28, 2013 2:40PM

Photo credit: Joe L

It hasn’t been a banner month for CTA. The Brown Line has been plagued by delays, most recently an equipment malfunction that led to delays Wednesday. Now the cost of a single-ride fare on the “L” could cost as much as $3 once the open fare Ventra payment system launches this summer.

RedEye’s Tracy Swartz reports the $3 fee would cover the standard $2.25 fare, 25-cent transfer and a “limited use media fee” of 50 cents for disposable single ride tickets. CTA spokeswoman Tammy Chase told Swartz the 25-cent transfer fee would be charged regardless of whether a rider makes a connection or takes a single train.

Those aren’t the only changes happening. CTA riders who use a Chicago Card will find they won’t be able to in 2014 as CTA moves to Ventra. Riders on the “L” will be able to use a Ventra card, disposable passes or credit and debit cards. Buses will still accept cash.

CTA increased the costs of passes this year, with the 30-day unlimited rides now costing $100. Earlier this month it was revealed that Money Network, the company behind Ventra, has an “F” rating with the Better Business Bureau, with most of the complaints against the company involving problems with the products they were offering and customer service, as well as billing and collection issues. This merits watching as CTA and Pace get out of the business of fare collection.

Swartz reports a public hearing on Ventra will be held at 6 p.m. on March 11 at CTA headquarters, 567 W. Lake St.