Mobility hubs are coming to the Bay Area this year. SUMC, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, and TransForm, with funds from the California Air Resources Board, are rolling out three mobility hub locations at affordable housing communities in Oakland, Richmond, and San Jose. The hubs will include carshare, bikeshare, electric vehicle charging, bike parking, discounted transit passes, and travel information screens.
The hubs address climate change and transportation equity and are part of the EV Car Sharing and Mobility Hubs in Affordable Housing Pilot. The program helps low-income households get around by bringing more transportation options providing connections to medical facilities, schools, grocery stores, and other daily needs. It will mean fewer cars on the road and lower costs for participating residents. (Low-income households can spend as much as 1/3 of their income just on transportation.)
Site Level Teams at each mobility hub will help their neighbors get acquainted with the hubs and the services. The Team members are residents themselves. They are trusted neighbors who can share information and answer questions.
The same Teams assisted with local surveys to understand residents’ travel habits and preferences in each site. The surveys, translated and administered in several languages, helped determine which transportation choices were needed at each site. For example, the survey revealed that in one site, nearly half of the respondents couldn’t use a carshare service because it required a driver’s license. The program shifted the service on that site to more discounts on transit passes.
We also conducted a Covid-19 Travel Survey in Spring 2021 to understand how the pandemic affected travel habits and patterns of the residents. The total amount of travel fell across all the sites and for nearly every transportation option. More than half of the people who responded said their travel patterns changed because of temporary schedule changes, or because they were furloughed, or laid-off, or they were unemployed.
Residents will soon be able to enroll in the hubs, and transportation options will start launching across all three sites throughout the year.