Case Study: Dynamically Routed Commuter Vans in a Metropolitan City

RideCo
September 15, 2016
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2 minute read

Background

RideCo’s dynamic routing technology was able to provide commuters an affordable everyday transit option. Learn about how various time and route restrictions were used to create a commuter service in a dense urban city.

  • Density: 23,041 per square mile
  • Vehicle Type: 6-passenger vans
  • Program: Virtual stop to virtual stop, flexible route commuter service
  • Pilot Program: 4 months

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Service between 3 residential locations and 40 commercial hot spots

Toronto is one of North America’s largest metropolitan cities and has a high population density urban core. Over the past decade, transit/road infrastructure has not kept up with the pace of growth in population and employment. Commuters who rely on public transit to travel into the city core often face overcrowded street cars, multiple transfers, waiting, and long commute times. An on-demand dynamically routed microtransit service that connects residential areas with downtown job centres would reduce the use of personal cars, solo taxi/Uber rides, and offer commuters a new convenient shared mobility option.

RideCo operated a microtransit pilot service in Toronto’s Liberty Village area, which has 12 high-rise residential condominium towers. Operating during commuting hours for $4 to $6, residents can take a shared ride from their homes to one of 40 commercial hot spots in downtown Toronto. Riders can book their rides on demand or up to three days in advance.

A ride from a driver may be shared among up to six passengers, who are each dropped off at their designated stops along a route that is dynamically set for the driver by RideCo and which may be updated by RideCo during the ride. By sharing their rides, passengers save money, paying less than they would on ride-hailing services, or if they were to drive and park their personal car. Riders enjoy a personalized express commute to and from work.

Service Goals

  • Provide on demand service from residential areas to commercial hubs in downtown
  • Encourage transition from personal cars and solo taxi/Uber rides towards shared mobility
  • Offer a better shared mobility solution to workers faced with challenging commute conditions such as overcrowded street cars, multiple transfers, and long commute times
  • Achieve high sharing and vehicle utilization

Results

  • Achieved superior sharing and vehicle utilization within three weeks with 90%+ of rides shared and a majority of these trips with three to six riders
  • Surpassed ridership of competing microtransit service (UberHOP)
  • 92% on-time drop off record, with a service frequency of every 10 minutes
  • Rider base largely includes millennials and households with one or no car
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