While Myki was rolled out on Vline trains during 2013, the hardware to make this possible had been rolled out a long time before, with Myki readers present at most Vline stations. How these readers were distributed around the stations however, was questionable. This post is a case study of my local station, Kyneton and the oddity of its reader on Platform 2.
Kyneton station has 3 readers on Platform 1, one for each entrance to the station. Platform 2 however, only has one reader. The single Myki device causes significant queueing for passengers in the afternoon peak.
Platform 1 is the busiest platform at Kyneton, with all trains to Southern Cross using it, as well as many off peak trains to Bendigo. Having three readers is therefore justified. However, passengers travelling to Melbourne can arrive anywhere between an hour (the frequency of trains on the Bendigo Line) to the very minute that their train departs the station. This means that there are no real queues to board the train, some people are more prepared than others, and there is a more even spread of arrival times. However, passengers disembarking the train do not have the option of arriving early, instead arriving at the station at the same time as everyone else.
The problem with queues at Kyneton seemed to have a solution in sight, however, in August last year, when I noticed some installation works, corresponding with the upgrades to Passenger Information Displays that happened across the Bendigo Line.
— Seph (@sephmurphy_) August 19, 2015
However, progress on the installation was slow, with the stand for the reader being installed, and nothing else happening over several months.
On the 10th of September, local member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas announced that an additional Myki Reader had been installed on Platform 2 at Woodend, another station prone to crowding in a similar manner to Kyneton.
— Mary-Anne Thomas MP (@MaryAnneThomas) September 9, 2015
On the 9th of December, the installation at Kyneton was still not completed, with still just the stand being present on the platform.
— Seph (@sephmurphy_) December 8, 2015
On the 18th of February, I finally asked the local Member, Mary-Anne Thomas, what was taking so long on the installation. Her reply was that V/Line were having trouble accessing the ticketing rack at Kyneton.
— Mary-Anne Thomas MP (@MaryAnneThomas) March 16, 2016
The ongoing saga
So it turns out it’s not just that V/Line wont install an extra reader, they can’t actually access the services they need to access to install the reader.
Here’s hoping it will eventually be installed. The Temporary fencing that has surrounded the electronics cabinet probably isn’t cheap after being there for six months.