INIT to deliver next generation ORCA fare collection system

Account-based fare collection system to revolutionise the Puget Sound Region's transit experience

INIT has been contracted by the Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority (Sound Transit) in the metropolitan area of Seattle, Washington/US to deliver the next generation ORCA electronic fare system. This represents the largest order in INIT’s company history. The initial contract value is approximately 50 million USD, which might sum up to a total of more than 90 million USD due to operations and maintenance options.


riders per day


passenger terminals PROXmobil


ticket vending machines

Customers benefit from more flexibility in ticket purchase

The next generation ORCA system will revolutionise the Central Puget Sound’s transit customer experience by providing more convenient locations to purchase ORCA media and by offering the opportunity to pay fares using EMV-certified bank-issued contactless cards or NFC-enabled mobile devices using either a virtualised transit card or a bank-issued EMV card stored in their mobile wallet. In addition, passengers will be able to manage their accounts online and in real-time, ensuring immediate access to load value to their account right up to just before their transit ride.

INIT will replace the card-based legacy ORCA system with a modern, account-based, and open architecture system capable of real-time 24/7 fare processing. The system is designed for multiple modes of transportation, including fixedroute buses, light rail, commuter rail, streetcars, ferries and water taxis. Sound Transit is procuring the next generation ORCA system on behalf of the ORCA member agencies, including Community Transit, Everett Transit, King County Metro, Kitsap Transit, Pierce Transit, and Washington State Ferries.

ORCA’s next generation system will be comprised of approximately 2,900 on-board fare validators (PROXmobil) and driver displays (TOUCHit), 1,000 wayside station fare validators (PROXmobil), and approximately 250 vending machines (VENDstation). INIT will also be opening a development centre in the Pacific Northwest as part of the contract to help serve its growing project needs up and down the West Coast.

Open system architecture allows integration of third-party systems

The core intelligence of the next gen ORCA system will be INIT’s back-office system, MOBILEvario. As each agency has varying infrastructure, INIT will incorporate these systems using open application programming interfaces (APIs). INIT’s open and flexible platform will integrate third party systems associated with ORCA, such as the non-INIT on-board and off-board equipment, systems, and software from various other suppliers.

INIT’s open architecture platform will also allow for additional transport options such as bikeshare, carshare and Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) to fully integrate with the next gen ORCA system in future project phases, providing Central Puget Sound transportation customers with options for a full end-to-end mobility solution.

7 companies involved

Sound Transit

Sound Transit is a public transit agency serving the Seattle metropolitan area in the U.S. state of Washington. It operates light rail service (Link light rail) in Seattle and Tacoma, regional Sounder commuter rail, and Sound Transit Express bus service. The agency as well manages the regional ORCA fare card system.

Washington State Ferries

Washington State Ferries operates automobile and passenger ferry service in the U.S. state of Washington as part of the Washington State Department of Transportation.

Kitsap Transit

Kitsap Transit is a public transit agency serving Kitsap County, Washington.

Pierce Transit

Pierce Transit is an operator of public transit in Pierce County. The agency’s service area covers the urbanised portions of Pierce County, part of the Seattle metropolitan area, and includes the city of Tacoma.

Everett Transit

Everett Transit is the public transit authority of the city of Everett, Washington.

Community Transit

Community Transit operates public transit in a part of Snohomish County.

King County Metro

King County Metro is the public transit authority of King County which includes the city of Seattle. It is the eighth-largest transit bus agency in the United States, carrying an average of 395,000 passengers each weekday on 215 routes.


Matthias Tanne

Head of Department Sales and Marketing