Expanding community mobility with microtransit
Regional Transit Authorities and municipalities are piloting microtransit in various communities of Massachusetts.
Regional Transit Authority examples
- GATRA GO – using microtransit to expand service and increase efficiency
- FRTA Access – using microtransit to expand service through existing capacity
- CATA On-Demand – using microtransit to increase connections between the commuter rail and employers
Many other Regional Transit Authorities are also piloting microtransit. To find out if microtransit is available in your community, contact your transit authority.
- NewMo – using microtransit to expand service quality for older adults in Newton as well as to expand mobility for the general public
- Salem Skipper – using microtransit to expand mobility and mitigate traffic congestion in Salem
Expanding community mobility with TNCs
In Massachusetts, organizations are partnering with TNCs to provide subsidized rides and enhance mobility for transportation-disadvantaged populations, including older adults, people with disabilities, and low-income individuals. For example:
- North Shore Community College – using TNCs to increase service efficiency
- Needham Community Council – using TNCs to supplement volunteer driver capacity
- The RIDE (MBTA) – using TNCs to increase customer service while reducing costs
- Community Accessing Rides and Taking People Places – using TNCs to expand mobility
- Carlisle Council on Aging – using TNCs to expand mobility
- Brookline and Burlington Councils on Aging – using TNCs to adjust to a changing transportation landscape
Learn more about some of these examples in our report from 2019 or this 2018 MAPC report.
Assisting riders in using on-demand options
- TRIPPS offers a multi-day instructional lesson that teaches participants how to download and use Uber and Lyft apps. The workshop culminates in riders pairing up to summon and take a trip on either Uber or Lyft in order to put their learning into practice. TRIPPS is an initiative of the Brookline Council on Aging. TRIPPS created a set of videos on using ride-hailing apps and other transit technology.
- GoGo schedules Uber and Lyft rides for callers, for an additional fee
- Lively phone users can use their phones to schedule Lyft trips for an additional fee
TNCs in Massachusetts
- Data on TNC usage by municipality
- State law on TNCs
- TNC disbursements - how municipalities are spending the 10 cents they get for each TNC ride that originates in their municipality
Shared Use Mobility Center - national organization researching ride-hailing and other new forms of shared mobility
Inclusive Shared Mobility: Enabling Service for Older Adults and People with Disabilities (2020) - Shared Mobility Inc and the National Aging and Disability Transportation Center
Examples of Mobility on Demand Policies and Public-Private Partnerships to Increase Accessibility (2020) - Shared-Use Mobility Center and the National Center for Mobility Management
Microtransit or General Public Demand–Response Transit Services: State of the Practice (2019) - Transit Cooperative Research Program Synthesis 141
Partnerships Between Transit Agencies and Transportation Network Companies (2019) - Transit Cooperative Research Program Research Report
Partners in Transit: A Review of Partnerships between Transportation Network Companies and Public Agencies in the US (2018) - report from the Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development at Depaul University