Shared-Use Mobility Center https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org Collaborating to advance transportation policy and practice Thu, 15 Aug 2019 17:26:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Mobility Hub Newsletter: August 15, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-august-15-2019/ Thu, 15 Aug 2019 17:26:42 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9335

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

Read about the Five Trends Pedaling Bikeshare Forward
Bikesharing services debuted in the US in 2010. Since then, they’ve expanded to include dockless, adaptive, and electric, pedal-assist varieties. But in 2017, another two-wheeled transportation device appeared on the block and skyrocketed in use—e-scooters. In this new blog post, SUMC looks at the major trends influencing the future of bikeshare.
Visit the blog.

New on the MOD Learning Center: Rural and Small Town Transportation
Shared mobility is only for cities, right? Wrong. While it’s true that small towns and rural areas don’t have the same access to multiple public transportation options as more densely populated urban environments, the public and private sectors are collaborating on ways to leverage emerging technology and service models to improve mobility options. In this new MOD Learning Center module, SUMC breaks down the policies, programs, and planning around rural transportation in the US. Learn more on the MOD Learning Center.

Non-SUMC Events

Attend the first meeting of the Chicagoland Bike Sharing Forum
Join regional bicycle and transportation advocates on Monday, October 21, 2019, from 10:00 am until 12:00 pm at the Kane County Government Center. The forum is an opportunity for current and prospective bikeshare stakeholders to discuss the variety of topics surrounding this ever-changing technology.
Learn more and register.


Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

The city council of El Monte, CA, unanimously voted to draft a law that would guarantee a $30-an-hour wage for ridehail drivers—essentially double the minimum wage in LA County.

GeekWire investigates the shutdown of BMW’s now-defunct ReachNow carsharing service in Seattle and Portland and how the recent Daimler-BMW joint venture had a hand in its demise.

Lyft has more plans to expand across Canada with Vancouver as its next target city.

VIDEO: Grist set out to see what mode (or combination of modes) would be fastest to get from downtown Seattle out to Seward Park. Did transit come out on top? Did ridehailing steal first? (Hint: it’s a little bit of both.)

Partnerships and Programs

Uber Health, the company’s initiative for non-emergency medical transportation, is partnering with American Logistics for more integrated healthcare transportation management and paratransit mobility in one unified platform.

According to a new study about statewide congestion from MassDOT, Boston is seeing some of the worst traffic around the country, and it looks like roads will stay car-choked if single-occupancy driving doesn’t decrease. Luckily, the agency has plans to boost transit service, encourage telecommuting, and fund more bus/rail infrastructure to kick the trend.

In their latest guide, the National League of Cities calls for more cities to consider congestion pricing to keep traffic low and create safer/cleaner communities. We agree.

Michigan’s SMART transit system donated a 32-foot bus to the Dearborn Heights Parks and Recreation Department to help seniors and riders with disabilities live independent lives by scheduling trips to cultural and community-based events—for free.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

Metro bikeshare has launched in North Hollywood with 150 bikes at 16 stations near the Orange and Red Line stations for better multimodal connections with transit.

How are dockless mobility, transit, and active transportation access impacted by equity goals in the DC region? Greater Greater Washington joined We Act Radio, Bird, and the District DOT, along with local community organizations, for a panel to discuss just that.

Atlanta has enacted a nighttime ban on electric scooters between 9 pm and 4 am after a series of accidents, almost all involving cars. No actions were taken against the automobiles.

Detroit’s MoGo bikeshare system is adding 50 new pedal-assist e-bikes to its fleet: great for longer trips, hilly terrain, and commutes.

Transit

The Koch brothers are at it again with dark-money campaigns to push anti-transit messaging, and this time its in Phoenix in the form of Proposition 105 to stop light rail development in the city’s South side.

Learn about LA Metro’s Office of Extraordinary Innovation and how its approach to transit and mobility technology are making it easier to live in LA without a car.

Caltrain in San Francisco wants to offer a “BART-like service” with a proposed expansion plan that would have trains showing up every 15 minutes, ideally boosting daily ridership from 65,000 to 180,000.

Check out this guide from Curbed on eight public prairie lands, forest preserves, streams, and lagoons that are accessible by public transit in the Greater Chicago area.

Technology

Google Maps wants to give you better walking directions by using augmented reality to overlay arrows and provide intuitive navigation in real time. It’s in beta everywhere Street View is available.

Street Story is a free online platform that allows anyone to contribute, collect, and analyze street design information in their communities. Streetsblog covers how this powerful tool is helping community groups and public agencies dissect the high rate of bike and pedestrian accidents happening around Humboldt County, CA.

Self-driving shuttle programs are kicking it into high gear around the US. Optimus Ride has started giving autonomous rides to ferry commuters at Brooklyn Navy Yard, and two companies are forming a partnership to offer “autonomous modular solutions” to help turn human-operated vehicles into self-driving versions.

MIT’s SENSEable City Lab and the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions want to use autonomous boats to ferry people across waterways so that larger fixed-route boats can get through without building a tall, expensive bridge.

Urban Sustainability

You can’t picture the prototypical American city without including multi-level parking garages dotting city streets, but now these auto-centric monoliths are being repurposed into modern apartment complexes while new structures are being built with a mixed-use retrofit in mind.

New York is going to make a part of Manhattan’s busy 14th Street almost completely off-limits to cars (save for deliveries, and drop-offs/pick-ups), a bold step to address the automobile’s role in congestion, pollution, and low public-transit ridership.

Climate Change and Land, a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, focuses on agriculture and conservation with an underlying idea we stand behind: to limit the negative consequences of unsustainable land management we need to stop cities from sprawling.

Glide past the taxis, TNCs, and traffic-stuck cars and take a bike ride to the airport. At least that’s what Bike Snob did as he details his trip to La Guardia while wondering why airports don’t make it easier for the traveling cyclist.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: Forty-Foot (40’) Zero Emission Electric Buses
Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation (IndyGo)
Indianapolis, Indiana
Deadline: September 3, 2019

RFP: Accessible Mobility on Demand
Sound Transit
Seattle, Washington
Deadline: September 27, 2019

RFP: Transit District Development Opportunity
City of White Plains
White Plains, New York
Deadline: November 1, 2019

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Scooters, scooters, everywhere. But what about the bikes? Five trends framing the future of micromobility https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/scooters-scooters-everywhere-but-what-about-the-bikes-five-trends-framing-the-future-of-micromobility/ Wed, 14 Aug 2019 18:56:22 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9329 According to Bloomberg, electric scooter mania is taking over cities. CityLab dubbed 2018 the “Year of the Scooter.” And from Providence, RI to Portland, OR e-scooter pilots have been popping up seemingly daily.

But in the face of the e-scooter boom, what’s going on with bikesharing—the original micromobility? How are bikeshare systems evolving with changing demand? In a multimodal network, will the modes complement each other, or compete, or some of both? Below are five major trends SUMC sees as emerging in the bikeshare market in 2019.

While dockless bike systems in smaller markets have largely been replaced by e-scooters, many of the largest docked systems are benefitting from greater investments and network expansion

While some cities, like Seattle and Orlando, are still home to dockless bikeshare systems or markets, many dockless operators have shifted their attention to e-scooters, which appeal to providers because they’re cheaper to manufacture and easier to rebalance. For example, Lime (which tellingly dropped the “Bike” from its name in mid-2018) pulled its green dockless bikes off the streets in a number of markets in early 2019 in favor of their e-scooter fleets. This left several cities, including St. Louis and Rockford, IL, without a bikeshare program at all.

Despite this shift away from dockless bikes to e-scooters, cities with large docked bike programs are leaning into their established systems. For example, New York’s Citi Bike announced this summer that it plans to nearly quadruple its existing 12,000-bike fleet to 40,000 bikes and double its coverage by 2023, including large expansions into the Bronx and Queens. Similarly, Chicago’s docked system is expanding to all 50 of the city’s wards in the next three years, and the DC region’s Capital Bikeshare added a seventh local jurisdiction to its system in May 2019.

However, while the docked systems in America’s largest cities are expanding, it remains unclear if the trend will be mirrored in smaller cities. Because of the large capital investment required for a widespread docked system, it is possible that dockless bikes—or perhaps the popular e-scooters—will emerge as the option best suited for smaller markets. Another possibility is that more cities will follow the lead of the Twin Cities’ Nice Ride MN and pursue hybrid bikeshare systems, using both physical and virtual docks, with the system becoming increasingly dockless as equipment reaches the end of its life cycle.

E-bikes and adaptive bikes are on the upswing   

Many systems are also expanding the types of bikes they offer. Bikeshare operating giant Motivate (acquired by Lyft in 2018) has promised to incorporate e-bikes in its markets, and already began to roll out a new generation of hybrid e-bikes despite recalling over 3,000 e-bikes in April 2019 due to safety concerns. The company has made it clear that it envisions transitioning much of its existing fleets to e-bikes in the coming years.

Similarly, the fleets of the vendors participating in Seattle’s dockless bikeshare pilot (Jump, Lime, and Lyft) consist entirely of e-bikes. They are overwhelmingly popular, particularly among commuters who want to bike to work without showing up sweaty, as the electric motor helps riders travel with less effort. In hilly areas like Puget Sound, the electric assist also makes biking a more viable choice for all kinds of trips for travelers at a variety of fitness levels. In cities like Madison, WI, and Fort Worth, TX, that have added e-bikes to their fleets in recent months, ridership has increased significantly.

The disabled community has also successfully pushed for bikeshare systems to incorporate adaptive bikes. These bikes, which include hand-powered, easy-balance, and tandem, help people with physical limitations take part in local bikeshare systems. Detroit , Oakland, and Portland have already launched adaptive programs, and Chicago’s new agreement with Lyft/Motivate requires that the operator incorporate an adaptive program within the next few years.

Bikeshare is becoming more deeply embedded in communities

Across the country, cities are integrating bikeshare with existing transit services, reinforcing bikesharing’s role as part of the public transit system. Portland, OR, now allows individuals to purchase a bundled “transportation wallet” that provides transit passes and bikeshare access at a steep discount versus purchasing the services separately. Pittsburgh is encouraging residents to use bikeshare to connect to transit trips by offering 15 minutes of free bikeshare for transit riders. Residents can simply use their public transit farecard to unlock a bike from the local “Healthy Ride” system.

Another trend revolves around markets typically not courted by bikeshare operators. Small and rural communities’ lower population density often makes implementing a fiscally sustainable microtransit program significantly more challenging. Because these smaller communities have different mobility needs and resources at their disposal, they are establishing their own bikeshare systems. Towns such as Pocahontas, IA, and Brusly, LA, are finding that, by owning and operating their own small fleets of shared bikes (instead of contracting operations out to a more expensive private party), they too can offer their residents bikeshare as a mobility option.

Markets are defining different operational models for different types of communities

When launching a bikeshare program, cities must consider local conditions and community needs, including density, geography and weather, potential bikeshare ridership, and infrastructure to support safe biking in general. However, the most central question for most cities is: how should we manage our bikeshare system? Should we select a single vendor or issue permits to multiple vendors, and how much are we willing to invest ourselves? Patterns are emerging that suggest that certain system models are better suited to certain community types.

Public-private partnership (P3): Some of the largest bikeshare systems in the U.S. are managed by a P3, where city departments (which can access different funding and financing sources than private companies) can share the burden of the significant up-front capital investment needed to launch a large-scale system. With a designated P3, the city has committed private sector involvement, and the selected operator can utilize their private-sector expertise while leveraging support from the supervising public agency. Cities like New York City and Chicago use the P3 model for their docked systems. These systems often benefit from advertising and sponsorships to further offset public costs and user fees.

Privately owned and operated: A private model can be one in which a city grants one vendor an exclusive right to operate in a community, or it can be one in which the city grants an operating permit to one or multiple qualifying vendors. With a permit model, a city allows a dockless bicycle provider to operate on their streets, charging companies a per-bike or annual fee (or both) and setting guidelines on where and how vendors can operate. The benefit of such a model is that there is no investment required on the part of the city beyond the cost of administering the program; the risk, however, is that the city has no commitment from operators to remain in the market, as communities like Saint Louis, Saint Paul, and many others experienced when Lime withdrew its bikes.

While the crest of the dockless wave has passed, and many dockless bikeshare operations have given way to e-scooters, a few cities with a strong biking market (such as in Seattle) have kept their dockless programs. For most cities, however, some degree of investment—such as in branding and geocoding traditional bike racks or parking zones—may be needed to support a permitted dockless or hybrid bikeshare operator going forward. Exclusively issuing permits for operation without any city investment has primarily become the domain of e-scooters.

Interestingly, some cities (such as Washington D.C.New York City and Chicago) have experimented with permitting private dockless programs to operate in conjunction with their public docked systems, but as a 2019 lawsuit in San Francisco can attest, this can be a tricky endeavor.

Non-profits: It is increasingly common among bikeshare systems for a local non-profit to “own” the system. In cities like Denver, CO and Philadelphia, PA, a non-profit contracts with a private operator to manage the bikeshare system. Because the bikeshare is not a city program, the city does not have to invest capital, but neither does it receive any revenue from the program. In most cases, the city does provide subsidies or sponsorships. The risk with such a model is that the program’s funding relies on grants and gifts. Nevertheless, it is used across the country for systems of all sizes, and for both docked and dockless bike programs.

City-operated leased bikes: This emerging model is one used almost exclusively by small and rural communities. For example, the Iowa-based company Koloni works specifically with small towns to bring city-owned bikeshare systems to them. In these markets, the city—not the company—is responsible for operating the bikeshare system; Koloni rents the bikes to the city for a monthly fee, which also includes use of the online platform for locating and paying for bikes. This model is typically used for very small dockless or hybrid systems, since the smaller communities willing to balance and repair their own fleets are rarely interested in investing the capital needed for a docked system.

Feds are starting to catch up to bikeshare’s benefits

As bikeshare grows in value around the country, many communities’ members of Congress have taken greater steps to support it. A House bill introduced in July would make some federal transit funds available to bikeshare programs, a huge step in recognizing bikeshare as an important and valid component of a transportation network. Another Senate bill would require that 5% of each state’s Federal highway funds be allocated to complete streets programs, which would support construction of biking infrastructure. And the $287 billion federal transportation bill released in July, 2019 includes an increase in funding for “Transportation Alternatives” such as biking and walking.

Overall, safe, well-designed infrastructure is key to micromobility use, and this will require expanding or remaking existing paths, roadways, and facilities. Hopefully, more federal legislators will learn to consider biking and walking (and scooting) forms of transportation in themselves, not an “alternative,” so needed investments can be made.

__________

What do these trends indicate? While the hype surrounding scooters may suggest they are the mode of the future, expansions in bikeshare system coverage, the integration of payment options with public transit, and the roll out of electric and adaptive bikes suggest that bikeshare continues to be seen as an important component of any city’s suite of mobility options.

Mobility trends come and go, but SUMC believes that both modes can work together as part of a multimodal network of accessible, affordable, and environmentally sound transportation options. If these trends continue, bikeshare will grow even more deeply embedded in communities and transportation systems in the years to come.

 

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Save the date: 2020 National Shared Mobility Summit https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/save-the-date-2020-national-shared-mobility-summit/ Mon, 12 Aug 2019 17:44:18 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9314

The date you’ve been waiting for is here!

2020 National Shared Mobility Summit

March 17-19, 2020

Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, Chicago, IL

Mark your calendars for the Shared Mobility Summit of the year. And the location isn’t all that’s new and exciting. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, check out some coverage of last year’s Summit through SUMC’s Ten Insights from the event’s sessions and our Executive Director Sharon Feigon’s Top Ten Summit Takeaways.

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: August 7, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-august-7-2019/ Wed, 07 Aug 2019 20:18:37 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9302

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

The date you’ve been waiting for is here!

2020 National Shared Mobility Summit
March 17-19, 2020 | Chicago, IL
Hyatt Regency McCormick Place

 

View of Chicago from Hyatt McCormick

Evening view from the Hyatt.

Mark your calendars for the shared mobility summit of the year, held at the place Illinois Meetings and Events Magazine named, “Best Conference or Resort Venue” two years in a row. (2016-17). And the location isn’t all that’s new and exciting. Stay tuned!

Coming in September: Equity in Shared Mobility Services
A new white paper and webinar will explore ways the public and private sectors can improve mobility partnerships to give low-income and transportation disadvantaged communities better access to economic opportunities.


Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Ridehailing companies think New York’s rules—limiting cruise time between trips and mandating a minimum driver pay—are limiting their ability to operate properly, but city officials say the policies are working in favor of drivers and riders. (And lowering emissions might add.)

Via expands its ridehailing service throughout Chicago and will offer $2.50 rides to and from 65 Metra and CTA transit stations.

Lyft has a new program that will provide veterans with free rides to career, housing, and food assistance programs in San Antonio.

EVs on the rise! Zipcar UK reports that 22,000 carsharing members have used an electric vehicle from the company’s fleet since July 2018.

Partnerships and Programs

The Detroit Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation were awarded $2.6 million in FTA grants to add electric buses and charging infrastructure, with help from DTE energy and EV bus manufacturer Proterra.

Masabi and Fort Collins, CO are launching an account-based fare system and mobile barcode e-tickets for the city’s transit system to speed up boarding and reduce wait times. Efficient and convenient.

A new bus program from the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, in partnership with the Health Forward Foundation, will give free rides to ten nonprofits in the region, a first-of-its-kind program in the nation.

EV tech company WAVE will provide wireless inductive charging systems to the Antelope Valley Transit Authority in Northern LA as the agency transitions to an all-electric bus fleet.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

As Divvy gears up to launch pedal-assist e-bikes in Chicago’s South Side, residents were able to try them out at community outreach events and in organized rides.

Not exactly “carbon-free” but getting there. The Conversation looks at the environmental impact of electric dockless scooters and what it would take for them to be a “net win” for the environment.

Electric mopeds look to be the next micromobility program coming to the DC area as the District DOT announces a four-month pilot for hundreds of the EV motorized vehicle.

According to a new report, a total of 65,124 miles were taken on dockless Lime scooters in Chicago since June 15th with a median distance of 1.1 miles.

Transit

New York’s MTA and Partnership for New York City will be working with six companies to test innovations in public transportation and mobility with the newly formed Transit Tech Lab, with subway and bus improvements as the focus.

A massive regional transportation plan in Maryland wants to improve public transit in Baltimore City and County, Anne Arundel County, Harford County, and Howard County by focusing on service reliability and the needs of all types of riders.

Boston wants the allure of public-private partnerships and big development to fuel interest in connecting the city’s North and South Stations for a more seamless regional transit system.

Pigeon Forge, TN, which has the second-largest rural transit system in the US., had a record-breaking year with a whopping 3.1 million passengers for the 2018-19 season.

Technology

Tap and go, all from your wrist. LA Metro just launched a new TAP wristbandthat stores transit values and passes. You can use it at all Metro validators, gates and fare boxes.

What’s the deal with air taxis? Bloomberg takes a look at how they have come into the public realm and what it’s going to take before we see them in our cities.

French autonomous tech company Navya is stepping away from its AV shuttles and pivoting to developing systems for 3rd party customers.

The auto industry has a vision for cities with autonomous vehicles. But with its auto-centric focus that treats cyclists, pedestrians and bus riders as second-class citizens, it looks pretty dystopian.

Urban Sustainability

“Who is the street for?” Sidewalk Labs dives into the age-old battle around street space in the US and how priorities shifted from pedestrian-friendly thoroughfares to car-clogged roadways—with complete streets as a way back.

The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic have made bold commitments to fight climate change with regional climate policies to curb transportation emissions, but will those policies keep equity in mind to help the transit-underserved and pollution-laden neighborhoods?

Racial segregation has been a major determinant in limiting housing opportunity among marginalized communities in Seattle, but researchers have been using personal “navigators” and neighborhood data to help families find high-opportunity areas for a better quality of life.

Los Angeles is officially kicking the Level of Service metric to the curb and has already started measuring Vehicle Miles Traveled to better frame the issues around traffic congestion to mitigate environmental impacts.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: Assist in the creation of a Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan
Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation
Chattanooga, Tennessee
August 22, 2019
E-mail: anniepowell@gocarta.org

RFP: Forty-Foot (40’) Zero Emission Electric Buses
Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation (IndyGo)
Indianapolis, Indiana
Deadline: September 3, 2019

RFP: Transit District Development Opportunity
City of White Plains
White Plains, NY
Deadline: Friday, November 1, 2019

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: August 1, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-august-1-2019/ Thu, 01 Aug 2019 14:00:21 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9292

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

SUMC Summer in Chicago Open House
August 1, 2019 | 5 – 7 PM
Join us at the Connectory in the historic Merchandise Mart for our first open house in our new digs. You’ll be treated to exclusive presentations by the City of Chicago and Via, and get the chance to network with mobility movers and shakers.
  • SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon will open and share SUMC news.
  • Kevin O’Malley from the City of Chicago will talk about the scooter and Car2Go pilots.
  • John Criezis from Via will talk about the service’s plans in the Windy City.

RSVP today!

MOD Learning Center Feature:
Learn how the right regulations can advance mobility for all.

This case study by the Frontier Group in coordination with the Shared-Use Mobility Center shows how smart rules and regulations can position a pilot to be used to its fullest potential—for everyone. See how Seattle used forward-thinking policies around dockless bikesharing to give more residents a sustainable mobility option on the MOD Learning Center.
Requires login or register for a free account.
Connexion Mobility is right around the corner
August 8, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Central)
Chicago Connectory Hear SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon & Strategy/Policy Director Ellen Partridge speak at the Connectory’s Connexion Mobility, a full-day event focused on the new mobility world and the cities, communities, technology, and mobility options that are shaping it. Refreshments provided. Register here.

Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Lyft has a new six-month pilot in Seattle that offers free trips to help the homeless access emergency shelter services.

A new MBTA study on TNCs in Boston estimates that ridehailing has taken away about $20 million each year of fares from the agency. Lyft and Uber have pushed back, saying the report doesn’t look at the whole picture.

Kids-only ridehailing service HopSkipDrive just launched in Phoenix, making it easier for parents to get their kids to after-school activities on busy workdays.

Southeast Asian ridehail giant Grab is setting its sights on the emerging mobility industry in Indonesia with $2 billion through a recent investment from Japan’s Softbank.

Partnerships and Programs

A recently-announced bill Congress, named America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019, calls for $287 billion over five years for road and bridge upgrades with $3 billion allotted to “lower highway-related carbon emissions” and another $1 billion for “alternative-fuel infrastructure.” It’s a start.

Check out the list of winners for the 2019 AARP Community Challenge which awarded $1.6 million to 159 quick-action projects from across the country, including ones that covered walkability, bikeability, access to public/private transit, and creating vibrant public spaces.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has big plans to make the city “the most accessible in the nation”, installing up to 100 traffic beeps or vibrations for the visually impaired. But from ramps on streets and sidewalks to working elevators in CTA stations, there is a long, expensive road ahead.

A one-cent regional sales tax is set to join the November 2020 ballot in the Bay Area to fund $100 billion in transportation projects.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

One step forward for multimodal transit in Chicago—the Transit app now supports trip planning and booking with dockless scooter options. They join Divvy, the city’s bikeshare program, public transit, and ride-hailing services.

A plus for shared mobility policy: lawmakers want to change federal laws to allow bikeshare programs to be eligible for federal transit funds with a new proposed bill.

Shared scooters flooded the streets of San Diego just over a year ago with applause and criticisms. Now Bird and Lime are in a tough legal battle with local impounding service ScootScoop, the “Repo Men” of dockless scooters.

What happened to all of the dockless bikes that once blanketed many US cities? Hundreds at least are being donated to nonprofits that help get people cycling.

Transit

Via is working with Fort Worth, TX’ Trinity Metro to offer first/last mile trips to Mercantile Center Station with a new on-demand shuttle service through the Trinity Metro ZIPZONE app.

Transit tech company TransLoc also has a new on-demand shuttle service with Antioch, CA’s Tri Delta Transit offering app-based trips to the Antioch and Pittsburg Bay Point BART Stations through a 6-month pilot.

Take a look through Chicago transit history as Chicago Mag highlights the upbeat cartoons and art of Ferdinand Himmelsbach, the man behind nearly 30 years of illustrations for CTA’s employee magazine.

When the means becomes the end. National Geographic lists ten public transit stations from around the world that feature “striking architecture, historic sites, and surprising views”, making them perfect travel destinations.

Technology

AVs will transform our regions, opening doors for parks not parking lots, and the chance for unheard-of sprawl. One way control their impact is to look at the auto industry’s past makes.

Public and open! Lyft is releasing its data on autonomous technology to the public in a move to accelerate the development of self-driving vehicles, one of the largest public data sets of its kind.

Alphabet’s self-driving arm Waymo and its AI division DeepMind are using a machine-learning technique called population-based training to fine-tune autonomous vehicle algorithms for the best driverless technology.

VIDEO: The future of self-driving might be closer than you think with options already out in the public from the Lyft-Aptiv partnership and Tesla, but some drivers have their doubts. CBS Sunday Morning explores.

Urban Sustainability

Ford, Volkswagen, Honda, and BMW are going to follow California’s own auto emissions standards (smart) in the face of the Trump administration’s plan to roll them back.

Three surprisingly bipartisan bills join recent measures from the House and Senate for a proposed carbon tax in the US to help invest for clean energy initiatives and reduce energy-related carbon pollution.

The Democratic candidates are facing off for a series of debates for the 2020 US election, and Curbed has put together a guide to show where some of them stand on housing, infrastructure, climate change, and transportation.

The US is synonymous with spread-out, car-focused transportation—with a history of 3.6 million deaths since 1899 and escalating pollution problems to show for it. In this light, the New Yorker asks, “Was it all a mistake?”

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: Mobile Fare Payment & Trip Planning
Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority
Tulsa, Oklahoma
August 09, 2019

RFP: Silver Line Transit Oriented Development and Multi-Modal Planning Study
Interurban Transit Partnership – The Rapid
Grand Rapids, Michigan
August 12, 2019

RFI: JTA Integrated Mobility Application
Jacksonville Transportation Authority
Jacksonville, Florida
August 16, 2019

RFP: Assist in the Creation of a Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan
Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation
Chattanooga, Tennessee
August 22, 2019, 02:00 PM
E-mail: anniepowell@gocarta.org

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: July 25, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-july-25-2019/ Thu, 25 Jul 2019 16:09:49 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9257

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

SUMC Summer in Chicago Open House
August 1, 2019 | 5 – 7 PM
The Connectory, Chicago
Our first open house in our new home is right around the corner! (The Connectory is an open-innovation space dedicated to the Internet of Things.) SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon will share SUMC news. Kevin O’Malley and Isaac Reichman from the City of Chicago will tell us what’s next for scooters, and John Criezis from Via will talk about shared ridehailing and eco-friendly mobility. RSVP today!

Join SUMC and the Chicago Connectory at CONNEXION MOBILITY
August 8, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Central)
Chicago Connectory
222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza #570, Chicago, IL 60654

Interested in a full day of discussions, networking, exhibitions and more centered on the mobility industry? Register for Connexion Mobility, located in the same innovation space as SUMC. Listen to thought-provoking presentations by SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon and SUMC Policy and Strategy Director Ellen Partridge. Explore topics including urban mobility, data sharing, rideshare, electric & autonomous vehicles, mobility for all, and a look at active projects in the US. Refreshments provided.
Register here.

MOD Learning Center Feature:
Increasing Mobility Options for Individuals with Disabilities

Imagine having to always book your ridehailing trips a day or two ahead of time. Not as convenient, right? For individuals with disabilities, this has often been the case. Today, pilots such as the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada’s paratransit partnership with Lyft are helping to change this by giving riders the opportunity to book on-demand rides through a TNC. Read the MOD Learning Center Case Study and see how it worked, what challenges and lessons arose, and future plans.

Requires login or register for a free account.

Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Uber is testing out an all-in-one subscription service in Chicago and San Francisco which includes fixed-price ridehailing trips, food delivery, and free trips on Jump bikes and scooters.

The Central Ohio Transit Authority and Grove City have a new pilot program with Via to fill first/last-mile gaps in fixed-route transit with an on-demand shuttle service.

BMW’s mobility off-shoot ReachNow shut down its carsharing service in Portland and Seattle in light of the company’s joint venture with Daimler citing “realignment” as the culprit.

Partnerships and Programs

Soon kids in California will be getting a CO2-free ride to class. The California Energy Commission is giving $70 million to state schools to swap over 200 diesel school buses with all-electric vehicles.

Ten years ago a bike lane was built on Vancouver’s Burrard Bridge that critics said was doomed to fail. Today it carries 1.3-million people on bikes every year and is the busiest bike lane in North America.

Travis County, TX has approved a long-term Transportation Blueprint to forecast and plan for the next 25 years of growth—with provisions for increasing pedestrian and bike infrastructure, transit spending, and awareness of alternatives to cars.

The Oregon Transportation Commission has awarded $19 million in funds to 37 community transit providers to build on and improve existing transit networks statewide.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

Planning your bikeshare trip just got easier, courtesy of Google Maps. Now the service lets you see how many bikes and open spaces are available at stations in 24 cities across 16 countries.

Seven out of the ten scooter companies who were in the Chicago pilot have been fined for issues ranging from operating outside of zones to failure to respond to concerns. Let’s hope this was just growing pains.

Stay up to date on the wild west of US dockless mobility with Smart Cities Dive’s updated interactive map and news round up.

Lufthansa Innovation Hub takes a look at the data behind the dockless scooter market in Germany and how the startups Tier, Lime, Circ, and Voi are doing in the cut-throat landscape thus far.

Transit

Representatives from the House are calling out the Trump administration for delaying crucial funding for public transportation projects to the tune of $2.4 billion. The FTA says they are simply doing due diligence.

Transit affordability in the Southside may get better if Cook County and Metra rail decide to lower fares for 2 lines to $2.50, equal to the CTA. We’re on board with that.

Austin wants to incentivize people to use more transit in the area—and are tossing around ideas like free transit passes, transit-use rewards program, “nudge” incentives, gamification strategies, and unbundling parking from home costs citywide.

King County Metro would like drivers to pay for their parking spot at ten Metro park-and-rides. The Sightline Institute applauds this new shift in reducing free parking at transit stops as a way to stop bleeding transit agencies dry.

Technology

Autonomous tech startup May Mobility is working directly with communities in Ohio on a wheelchair-accessible prototype for its self-driving vehicles to address accessibility issues in new transportation technology.

Want the option to hail a ride, hop on a scooter, or plan your next transit trip all in one app? Lyft is making that easier in New York by adding subway and bus directions. No word on purchasing your ticket though.

Tesla wants to activate “full self-driving” capabilities in a substantial proportion of its cars through an over-the-air update this year. Regulators and industry heads are worried this could lead to an influx of injuries and major accidents.

Learn how the Mobility Data Specification for micromobility data was started by 15 cities and how the newly-formed Open Mobility Foundation wants to give cities and organizations alike the power to use the open-source standard for smarter urban mobility.

Urban Sustainability

Houston is giving less priority to cars by expanding a pilot that removes parking minimums for neighborhoods in the East End and parts of Midtown.

Will electric cars fix most of our emissions problem in the US? Well, Bike Snob wants to (re)introduce you to the e-bike! Pedal-assist, electric, and a congestion killer. The problem? They aren’t as subsidized as EV cars.

Check out this fun infographic by transportation tech company Geotab that shows the square footage devoted to roads, green space, and buildings in 15 US cities.

Climate change has devastating effects on the environment and cities, pushing our infrastructure and resources to the brink of shut down, but there are ways we can rebuild, redesign, and reshape our cities to keep them cool and resilient.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: City: One Indianapolis Challenge
Indianapolis, Indiana
Deadline: August 6, 2019

RFP: Proposals for Paratransit Services
Hampton Roads Transit, Virginia
Deadline: August 8, 2019

RFP: Mobile Fare Payment & Trip Planning
Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority
Tulsa, Oklahoma
August 09, 2019

RFP: Silver Line Transit Oriented Development and Multi-Modal Planning Study
Interurban Transit Partnership – The Rapid
Grand Rapids, Michigan
August 12, 2019

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: July 18, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-july-18-2019/ Thu, 18 Jul 2019 17:42:43 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9234

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

Did you miss SUMC’s webinar on Objective-Driven Data Sharing for Transit Agencies in Mobility Partnerships?
View the webinar here. You can also read the white paper it supports, which draws on lessons learned from the Federal Transit Administration’s MOD Sandbox program and beyond to help transit agencies determine the right data-sharing approach for their projects.

SUMC Summer in Chicago Open House
August 1, 2019 | 5 – 7 PM
The Connectory, Chicago
If you’re in the Chicago area, Join SUMC, the City of Chicago, and Via at our first open house in our new location: the Connectory in the historic Merchandise Mart. RSVP and learn more here.

 

 

New MOD Learning Center Case Study

The Shared-Use Mobility Center and Todd Hansen of the Texas A&M Transportation Institute collaborated on a case study about the Norwalk Transit District Wheels2U microtransit service in Norwalk, CT. Wheels2U, which uses branded complementary paratransit vehicles while they are not in service, built a wide base of support in part through innovative marketing initiatives.

Read about what they did and program outcomes on the MOD Learning Center.


Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Uber puts diversity, inclusion, and equity goals on the agenda at last, aiming to boost the representation and promotion of POC employees to 14% in three years.

A new bill in Massachusetts aims to collect more detailed data from ridehailing services and sets provisions to improve safety for passengers. Meanwhile, Axios warns about the privacy and security concerns around ridehailing apps having too much access to transit data, touching on the industry’s shift into mobility-as-a-service and how that could create a complicated relationship with transportation data as a whole.

Chinese mobility giant Didi will now feature other ridehailing companies in its app, a first for a TNC.

Partnerships and Programs

More for the streets, less for the roads. The Complete Streets Act recently introduced in Congress wants to make states set aside “five percent of federal highway funds for complete streets programs.”

In the face of rising housing costs and the evolution of on-demand mobility, Minneapolis is developing a 10-year Transportation Action Plan to put equity and access at the forefront of the region’s transportation goals.

Lyft has a new program that helps late-night restaurant workers in Boston get home through subsidized ridehailing trips when transit isn’t running.

Transportation solutions company First Transit has partnered with Lyft to pilot on-demand, wheelchair-accessible trips in Los Angeles and San Francisco—all through the Lyft app.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

Mobility data company Passport is teaming up with Detroit, MI, Charlotte, NC, and Omaha, NE to test a structured parking management and distribution system for Spin dockless scooters to fine-tune scooter placement and fleet sizes.

Baton Rouge officially launched its bikeshare system with mobility operator Gotcha, bringing the city 500 electric pedal-assist bikes at 50 docks.

Speaking of Gotcha, the company also rode into Syracuse where it launched 200 of its pedal-assist bikes at 35 docks in the New York college town.

The first EV scooter-sharing program in Western Canada has arrived! Micromobility company OGO Scooters launched its dockless scooter service in Kelowna, BC.

Transit

The public and private sectors both need to improve their systems to help people with disabilities get accessible and reliable on-demand rides. People in Pittsburgh have found that local paratransit, along with ridehailing services, just don’t cut it.

Chicago’s Pace transit is banking on new rail-like features for its Pulse bus line, such as platform-level boarding and traffic signal priority, to speed up a busy route and grow ridership in a time when bus ridership is stunted around the US.

Staten Island officials pen a letter to Governor Cuomo asking to expand transportation options in the area with a microtransit pilot to complement current transit options.

Transit is more than just a means to get around. It ties together a community and creates better social connections according to a new working paper coming from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Technology

Ford and Volkswagen will be sharing the drivers seat in an alliance announced earlier this year to work on autonomous and electric vehicle developmentthrough VW’s MEB electric platform and Ford’s self-driving tech subsidiary Argo AI.

Ridehailing company Via is working with local bus operator BusBot to launch an autonomous shuttle program in New South Wales, Australia with EasyMile self-driving vehicles.

The US Transportation Research Center has unveiled a 540-acre test site in Ohio to work on the development of autonomous and connected vehicles and other mobility technologies.

San Antonio has new, state-of-the-art Smart City Kiosks that incorporate smart screen tech to help people with multimodal trip planning and find real-time traffic and transit information.

Urban Sustainability

In a city super-dense city with high transit use, why are cyclist deaths for 2019 already almost double the entire 2018 count? Overlooked biking infrastructure and pedestrian/cyclist safety measures are two roots of the problem.

One big opportunity that could speed up the transition away from gas-powered transportation and into a more electrified future with more robust public transportation: the Green New Deal.

Two wheels will always be better than four. A new study from the UK’s Center for Research into Energy Demand Solutions found that electric bikes would be better fit for fighting urban traffic, sprawl, and social health than EV cars.

Let’s take a cue from Amsterdam. In the US, motor vehicle crashes are the #1 cause of death of children 19 years old and under yet a lot of parents still choose to drive their kids to school everyday. How does a city like Amsterdam like to take its kids to school? Bikes, of course.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: City: One Indianapolis Challenge
Indianapolis, Indiana
Deadline: August 6, 2019

RFP: Proposals for Paratransit Services
Hampton Roads Transit, Virginia
Deadline: August 8, 2019

RFP: Gateway Station District Development
City of Charlotte, NC
Deadline: September 11, 2019

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SUMC Summer in Chicago Open House https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/sumc-summer-in-chicago-open-house/ Wed, 17 Jul 2019 17:12:25 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9215

August 1, 2019 | 5 – 7 PM
The Connectory, 222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza Suite 570, Chicago, IL 60654

REGISTER FOR THE OPEN HOUSE

The weather isn’t the only thing that’s hot this Summer in Chicago. Join SUMC, the City of Chicago, and Via at our first open house in our new location: the Connectory in the historic Merchandise Mart.

Shared mobility options like ridehailing, bikesharing, micromobility, and transit are taking the city by storm. At this invite-only event, you can enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres as you learn about the latest developments first-hand.

Featured Speakers:

  • SUMC Executive Director Sharon Feigon will open and share SUMC news.
  • Kevin O’Malley and Isaac Reichman from the City of Chicago will tell us what’s next for scooters in the city.
  • John Criezis from Via will talk about the service’s shared approach to ridehailing and eco-friendly mobility.

Panel presentations will be followed by Q & A and time for networking and refreshments. This will fill up early, so save your spot today!

The Connectory is an Internet of Things co-creation space and incubator developed by Bosch and 1871 and located on the 5th floor of Chicago’s Merchandise Mart.

If you have any questions, please reach out to Kimberly Steele at kimberly@sharedusemobilitycenter.org.

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: July 11, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-july-11-2019/ Thu, 11 Jul 2019 17:42:21 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9202

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

New White Paper for Transit Agencies: Objective-Driven Data Sharing for Transit Agencies in Mobility Partnerships

Download the Executive Summary.

A primary challenge in implementing Mobility on Demand (MOD) solutions has been reaching an agreement between public and private partners over data sharing. Drawing on lessons learned from the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) MOD Sandbox program and beyond, this paper supports the decision-making process of transit agencies that are considering MOD or similar integrated mobility partnerships with private-sector mobility service providers.

Based on observations from both inside and outside the Sandbox, approaches are given to address these challenges, and subsequently, obtain and analyze the data that are necessary to meet project goals.

Recent SUMC Posts and Publications

What the first transit/TNC partnership can teach us: SUMC’s new case study surfaces the lessons agencies can learn from PSTA’s Direct Connect pilot.

SUMC is hiring!

Join a distinguished public interest organization dedicated to creating a multimodal transportation system for all: us! SUMC is looking for a Program Manager and a Program Coordinator for our Los Angeles, CA location.
View full job descriptions and apply.


Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Jalopnik wants to help ridehail drivers figure out where Uber and Lyft’s surge pricing surges to with a new portal that gathers data on anonymized fares and their payout structure.

Check out this Globetrender interview on the future of shared transportation with Chris Snyder, CEO of Via’s microtransit joint venture with Mercedes-Benz called ViaVan.

The District DOT is reopening its free-floating carsharing application to new companies in the DC region, adding to the Car2Go and Free2Move mix—and potentially hundreds of new shared vehicles.

The fight for full-employee status for ridehail drivers has the LA Times calling on the companies in question to take a long look at their business model and call the drivers “employees.”

Partnerships and Programs

Growth, Innovation, and Equity. Smart Cities Dive takes a look at three major trends for public transit and transportation infrastructure that are highlighted in the 2020 Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Bill.

Rockford, IL has a $31 million plan that seeks a $25 million federal grant to transform downtown corridors into bikeable, walkable, and transit-friendly communities to keep up with the densifying residential core.

The Dutch city of Utrecht is adding plant-covered rooftops to 316 bus stops around the city in an effort to create more bee sanctuaries and add green infrastructure.

Pittsburgh is gearing up to release a bike master plan by the end of the year to boost the citywide bike lane network and cover cycling gaps.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

What do Chicago residents think about the recently-launched dockless scooter pilot? Streetsblog asked people in scooter-filled neighborhoods about the pros and cons of the program.

A mobility project led by Four Mile Run Conservatory Foundation is helping Central American people in North Alexandria, VA get to ESL classes with subsidized Capital Bikeshare passes for cleaner connections to family-oriented services.

A CityLab writer recaps his 19-day and 41-ride journey with Bird’s rentable scooter in San Francisco and why it was sometimes better (and worse) than his pedal-friendly alternative (his bike).

You can now rent DC’s Capital Bikeshare bikes through the Lyft app, furthering its MaaS and bikeshare integration efforts.

Transit

Advocacy groups, organizations, and activists around the US are stepping in for public agencies and creating eye-catching DIY benches for bus stops that remind passersby there’s a shared way to get around.

Metro Magazine makes a good case for a great point: Transit cannot be “smart” unless it’s equitable and accessible for all.

King County Metro is planning to change up to 30 bus routes in the region to move stops closer to light rail stations, aiming to make transfers and multi-legged trips much quicker.

Baltimore is experimenting with pop-up bus stops for traffic-laden corridors to make it safer for cyclists in bike lanes and transit riders to get on the bus.

Technology

A group of 11 companies, including OEMs and tech companies like Audi, VW, BMW, Intel, HERE, and Daimler, have released a 157-page report that spells out 12 guiding principles for the safety, development, testing, and validation of autonomous vehicles.

Alphabet’s self-driving venture Waymo has been granted a permit to operate its autonomous vehicles on California roads.

Want to know how variable a New York transit commute can be? The New York Times has a new data tool that breaks down any single trip into median travel time, how the trip changes at different times, and how much time you should set aside for a commute.

MIT researchers want cities to get more accurate city data on air pollution, noise levels, traffic, road conditions, and weather by affixing sensors on top of taxi cabs instead of using dedicated municipal vehicles.

Urban Sustainability

Urban regions are finding more and more reasons to cut parking minimums and restructure zoning around walkable and bikeable neighborhoods while favoring affordable housing. Reinventing Transport’s new podcast episode gives the low-down on where this no-minimum movement has been and where it’s headed in the future.

Cycling advocate and author Peter Walker debunks 10 myths about bike lanes and cycling infrastructure that opponents use to block active transportation improvements in some UK cities.

US states have been building a steady level of gas taxation over the years to grow funds for transit and infrastructure improvements. The federal government, however, hasn’t passed a gas tax increase for the past 25 years. Why?

Tactical urbanism strikes again in a simple yet effective way—plungers on the street help keep pedestrians and cyclists safe from turning cars.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: Consulting Services for the Yavapai Passenger Transportation Study
Northern Arizona Council of Governments
Deadline: August 12, 2019

RFP: Transit Management Services
Waukesha Metro Transit, Wisconsin
Deadline: August 12, 2019

RFP: Provide a Fare Collection System
Spokane Transit Authority, Washington
Deadline: August 19, 2019

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Mobility Hub Newsletter: July 3, 2019 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/mobility-hub-newsletter-july-3-2019/ Wed, 03 Jul 2019 19:23:52 +0000 https://sharedusemobilitycenter.org/?p=9151

Welcome to the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s weekly guide to the most impactful news, thought-provoking articles and innovative technologies that are shaping our transportation future. We believe in sharing information, just like sharing cars, bikes, and scooters, so if there’s anything additional you’d like to see, just drop us a line.

Announcements

Just released study of the first publicly funded transit-ridehail partnership
The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) was the first public transit agency in the US to subsidize rides to transit stops in ridehail vehicles. A new report by SUMC and Transit Center details how the pilot emerged and evolved, the challenges faced along the way, and what other agencies can learn from PSTA’s experience.
Download the report here.

Register today for next week’s SUMC webinar on data sharing
Wednesday, July 10, 2019 12 PM CT
A primary challenge for transit agencies implementing Mobility on Demand (MOD) solutions is reaching an agreement between the public and private partners over data sharing. Drawing on lessons learned from MOD projects, this webinar aims to help transit agencies determine the right data-sharing approach for their own current and future MOD partnerships. This webinar complements the upcoming release of a SUMC white paper on data sharing in mobility partnerships.
Register today

Hear SUMC program director speak about data sharing in the Twin Cities
Prashanth Gururaja will join fellow transportation, research, policy, and sustainability experts at the Shared Mobility Data Seminar on Thursday, July 11, 2019, at 8:30 – noon at Coffman Memorial Union at the University of Minnesota. RSVP here.


Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling

Waze, Google Map’s navigation and tech outfit, is trying to make carpooling cool again. But what incentives will it take to shift people back into shared commutes?

The road to profitability still looks rocky for Uber and Lyft, despite their recent IPOs. Yet smaller startups and companies are basing their entire business plan on ridehailing’s continuity.

Ridehailing companies may have kickstarted the on-demand ride business 10 years ago, but innovations in on-demand transit and point-to-point shuttleshave a strong chance to compete with ridehail and support traditional transit services.

All electric, all shared: Volkswagen’s WeShare carsharing service launched 1,500 free-floating e-Golf EVs in Berlin with plans to add 500 more vehicles next year.

Partnerships and Programs

A consortium of seven Ohio transit agencies called NEORide partnered with transportation tech company Masabi to launch EZfare, an app that lets riders buy public transport tickets across multiple regions in the state.

The District DOT and data company curbFlow are working together to collect curbside data in nine DC locations to better manage street space. We hope this catches on.

First Transit, Houston Metro, and Texas Southern University just started the first shared autonomous shuttle in the Houston region that runs a one-mile loop around the campus. 

The Federal Transit Administration chose the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority to spearhead a rail extension in Downtown San Jose and Santa Clara, CA., making new tracks for high-capacity transit.

Bikesharing and Micromobility

The Open Mobility Foundation is a new coalition of over 20 cities, companies, and nonprofits who intend to clean up the wild west of dockless scooters with help from LADOT’s Mobility Data Specification. What do scooter companies think of this initiative? Well, it’s complicated.

Nashville is considering banning scooter-sharing from the city after a man riding a scooter was fatally struck by a driver in late May. No word on banning cars, which were involved in more than 35,000 deaths last year.

Uber has rolled out around 600 of its JUMP pedal-assist e-bikes in Montreal. Pedal on!

Lime is launching its dockless scooters across Latin America in six major cities (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Lima, Mexico City, and Santiago) with more slated in the coming year.

Transit

Los Angeles is facing major losses in bus ridership, in part due to issues with reliability and travel times. How will it reverse its 25% drop over the last decade? It’s rethinking just about everything.

Meanwhile, Pittsburgh’s bus-ridership is growing. Grist’s civic engagement and green living column explores why with insight into the city’s changing rider demographics and its “prototypical bus rapid transit.”

An urban planner reimagines Louisville with a dedicated rail system, hopeful that the future of the city will borrow from its streetcar past.

Maryland’s Montgomery County DOT is kicking off an on-demand “corner-to-corner” shuttle service with Via. It’ll offer regular and wheelchair-accessible rides to people in the Rockville and Wheaton-Glenmont areas.

Technology

Apple has acquired autonomous tech company Drive.ai, fortifying its interest in self-driving vehicle projects.

Who else is buying up AV software companies? It looks like Uber has acquired Mighty AI in Seattle to help scale the ridehailing company’s self-driving technology and automation expertise.

The next wave of mobility-as-a-service providers might just be public authorities. Berlin transportation agency BVG just launched the MaaS app Jelbi that lets users plan and pay for transit, bikeshare, carshare, and EV motor scooters.

Oh, Google maps. They’re releasing an update in 200 cities worldwide that shows users how crowded their bus or train will be when they plan their trip and releasing a feature in India that alerts riders when their trip goes off route. We’re excited to see what’s next.

Urban Sustainability

With transportation being the leading cause of carbon emissions in the nation, SUMC and our local colleagues in transportation and policy ask Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot to study a congestion pricing plan for the city to help fight climate change and push the region toward a more sustainable transportation network.

Ready, set, ride! Wired ranks the world’s 20 most bike-friendly cities with its Copenhagenize Index. See if your metro made the cut.

Planetizen lays out some statistics on how cities differ on vehicle-miles traveled and what positive shifts are possible if they become more multimodal and invest additional in transit systems.

Ditch your car and pedal electric wheels. E-bikes are creating massive waves across Europe and Asia as people slowly park their cars for pedal-assisted cycling. The US is feeling the itch to ride as well in big cities like LA and Atlanta.

Requests for Proposals, Qualifications, or Information

RFP: Rochester Downtown Circulator Transit-Oriented Development Planning
City of Rochester, Minnesota
Deadline: July 29, 2019 at 2 PM

The City of Rochester was awarded a Federal Transit Administration grant under the Pilot Program for Transit-Oriented Development Program to conduct a comprehensive assessment and analysis of economic development opportunity, transit-supportive land use possibilities, public realm improvement options and infrastructure that will enhance access and ridership on a planned Rochester Downtown Transit Circulator, a proposed 3.5-mile fixed-guideway transit project serving the core employment and business area of downtown Rochester along with major public buildings such as the Mayo Civic Center (Rochester’s primary convention and event facility) and adjacent downtown neighborhoods.

RFP: Consulting Services for the Yavapai Passenger Transportation Study
Northern Arizona Council of Governments
Deadline: August 12, 2019 at 3 PM MST

Northern Arizona Council of Governments (NACOG) is seeking qualified firms to complete a Yavapai Passenger Transportation Study. The plan will be prepared under the direction of NACOG staff with the active involvement of, and consultation with, public, private, and non-profit transportation providers, transportation users, stakeholders, and Central Yavapai Metropolitan Planning Organization.

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