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Talks continue over campus Presto machine

Metrolinx, Humber College and IGNITE are talking.

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File photo of Humber College.

Discussions are ongoing between Metrolinx, Humber College and IGNITE for the addition of a Presto machine on campus, officials said on Wednesday and Thursday, with the onus this week on the college to review the financial impact.

Scott Money of Metrolinx said in an emailed statement that the next step in the process was for Presto to provide Humber Sustainability Specialist Devon Fernandes with device costs and specifications.

Money added that Presto hopes to have the information to Fernandes this week. It marks a development in the long running effort to bring the machines to campus, which allow users to refresh their transit credit cards.

Humber College’s communications manager Emily Milic said in an email that “Humber and IGNITE are working together to determine the feasibility of installing a Presto reloadable machine on campus.”

“Currently, students and staff can use the Presto app to reload their cards and they will continue to have this option available to them.”

It is unclear what say the student union will have on the decision to purchase a reload machine for campus, but it has long been move supported by and called for by students.

The Avro Post first reported exclusively in March that Humber and Metrolinx, which owns Presto and GO Transit, were in talks to bring the vendors to Humber’s Toronto campuses.

There are upwards of 30,000 students at Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber and thousands of them utilize multiple forms of city and intercity transit. Most of the transit systems, if not all of them, accept the smart Presto cards.

In January, Humber Et Cetera reported that it did not appear a Presto machine would be coming to campus anytime soon, leaving students to find a machine elsewhere or load their cards online, a process that takes sometimes 24 hours to finish.

At the time, IGNITE Vice President Megan Roopnarine had just won her election race. She told The Avro Post in March that the development was was “great news”, adding that it is “much-needed for the student body”.

When asked if she will reach out to the Humber College administration to find out what movement they have made towards bringing a Presto machine to campus, Roopnarine said “that’s the plan.”

Bringing a Presto machine to campus was on Roopnarine’s election platform as she ran to represent students at the University of Guelph-Humber. If one is added to campus, it would be a win for her advocacy.

IGNITE candidates have for years added advocating for Presto machines on campus to their platforms, but none that ended up elected have been successful thus far in their efforts.

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The Avro Post was established as an independent student publication at Humber College’s North Campus in October 2017. Its mission is to report daily news, important updates and in-depth reporting that matters to students on campus.

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