Originally Posted by officedweller
I think that's because you don't need to tap out there when you exit - there's a light sensor that triggers the gate to open from the other side when someone approaches - that's what the people are triggering to open the gate.
I hear TransLink will require you to tap out to exit the system (i.e. in anticipation of distance based fares) - so presumably no light sensor.
Exactly. The MUNI gates are different than almost every other gate in the world in that there are motion sensors on the gates that allow people to exit the gate without tapping out. So people take advantage of the design feature. It's not technically a bug as the gates are supposed to let people out without taping; it's an exploit of a poorly thought out idea. Our gates will require riders to tap out, just like almost every other gated system in existence, so it won't have any of the problems the MUNI gates have.
The MUNI gates have swipe readers on them for the MUNI single day fare tickets, as well as some of the older fare media which they are phasing out.
Which brings up an interesting point. Translink should launch the new farecard before the gates are ready. People should get used to using a card and topping it up and tapping it at buses and stations before having to deal with the faregates. That way they don't need to worry about phasing out paper tickets.
The MUNI gates are slow, but they are designed that way. It keeps people from getting hit by fast moving gates. And yes, the gates are programmed to stay open between users a bit so that the next user does not have to wait for the gate to close before tapping their card. That way when there is a line of people, they can all pass through without the gates continuously opening and closing, wasting time. Yes, it means people can just sneak in through the line, but there are ways to detect people passing through that haven't tapped their card and police could be notified.
Even in systems where there are gates, like London, police still do fare checks to ensure people have properly paid or tapped. Without police checking fares on our Skytrain after the gates are in, everyone will just buy concession fares and cheat the system that way (like many already do, I swear almost half the riders I see getting caught by police have either an unscratched 1 zone card or concession fare, so there are a lot of half cheaters out there).
I actually like the look of the gates just fine. They are rather slender with more organic curves. The ones from Japan that I have seen look a little too short and fat, just the right height for people to hop over without drawing any attention. In fact I bet I could step over the Japanese ones without breaking stride (I guess I'm just taller than most in Japan though).
At least the gates we are getting offer a proper challenge to keep people from easily jumping them and offer a more visual form of reassurance to people looking for a safe system, without them being floor to ceiling, cattle herding like, monstrosities.