The Shared-Use Mobility Center Announces the On-Ramp, a New Program to Help Transit Agencies Develop Innovative Partnerships to Advance Mobility On Demand

By February 6, 2018MOD On-Ramp, News

The Shared-Use Mobility Center (SUMC) seeks proposals from public transportation providers to receive technical assistance to develop mobility-on-demand (MOD) projects.

The On-Ramp program, part of a partnership with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), provides an opportunity for transit agencies and other transportation providers with promising ideas to expand on-demand mobility to receive expert assistance to develop business plans and other project-building strategies. Selected participants will engage in a comprehensive, year-long process that could involve supported engagement, peer mentoring, research, and other activities.

Participants will receive support to:

  • Conduct workshops in their communities to determine local mobility needs and set parameters for possible projects;
  • Participate in a national community of practice with peer agencies and related experts as well as access to in-person workshops;
  • Utilize research and analysis from SUMC and related experts;
  • Collaborate one-on-one with peers and identify resources to meet challenges; and
  • Develop a feasible MOD business plan.

“This is an exciting program that will help to shape the future of public-private partnerships for shared mobility while creating important connections with transit,” said SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon. “We look forward to continuing our work with FTA and communities around the country to help guide the future of shared mobility.”

“FTA is pleased to continue our partnership with the Shared-Use Mobility Center through the Mobility on Demand On-Ramp program,” said Vincent Valdes, Associate Administrator of the FTA’s Office of Research, Demonstration and Innovation. “The On-Ramp offers innovators across America a means to take good ideas in the realm of on-demand transportation service and turn them into viable solutions with the aim of advancing a vision for integrated, multi-modal, person-centered mobility across our country.”

The On-Ramp program builds on two existing initiatives:

  1. The FTA’s MOD Sandbox Program, in which supports 11 cities across the country as part of a larger U.S. Department of Transportation research effort to help transit agencies and communities integrate new mobility tools like smart phone apps, bike-sharing, car-sharing and demand-responsive bus and van services.
  2. SUMC’s work on the Innovation and Knowledge Accelerator (IKA), created by FTA to facilitate exchange ideas, discussions of lessons learned and offers of mutual support between MOD Sandbox participants and others interested in implementing shared-mobility programs.

Similar to the IKA program, the On-Ramp network will:

  • Foster innovation in areas such as system integration, partnerships, innovative business models and equity-of-service delivery;
  • Identify project-specific challenges and provide technical assistance to improve outcomes of MOD Sandbox projects;
  • Build a shared knowledge-base and accelerate learning on issues that affect the implementation of MOD projects; and
  • Develop resources for use by the wider MOD field.

SUMC operates a clearinghouse that includes the Shared Mobility Toolkit—made up of a Policy Database, Benefits Calculator and Mapping and Opportunity Analysis tool—that will help guide On-Ramp participants.

To support the project, SUMC will also draw on the experience of its staff in researching, designing, and implementing shared-mobility projects around the country. SUMC’s current projects include Transit Cooperative Research Program research on TNCs and private transit, work on Bay Area car-sharing implementation strategies, the Twin Cities shared mobility action plan, an all-electric car-sharing project in low-income areas in Los Angeles, and more.

Up to six communities will be chosen via a competitive process to take part in the On-Ramp program. Applications are due to the Shared-Use Mobility Center by 11:59pm ET on March 21, 2018. An independent panel of Mobility on Demand experts will review applicant proposals and recommend those to take part.

A public informational webinar about the On-Ramp took place on February 21, 2018. A recording and slides from the webinar are available in SUMC’s Policy Database.

For more information, see the links below or email

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