Arlington’s Via Rideshare Transportation Program to Continue in 2019

Via Rideshare now takes passengers to destinations as far south at the Arlington Highlands shopping center.

The City of Arlington’s convenient, on-demand Via Rideshare transportation program, which has already provided more than 85,000 rides since rolling out last December, will continue for a second year.

The Arlington City Council approved on Dec. 4 a one-year contract renewal with Via Transportation, Inc., which will allow the public transportation pilot program to continue serving residents, students and visitors six days a week. As part of the renewal, Via’s fleet of six-passenger Mercedes Metris vans will increase from 13 to 15 and the company will also grow its number of drivers in independently owned vehicles to keep passengers’ average waiting times below 12 minutes.

Via uses a smart phone application and dynamic routing to provide efficient on-demand trips and access to a wide range of destinations within The American Dream City. Because it does not have fixed routes or a fixed schedule like traditional public transportation options, Arlington’s Via Rideshare allows riders to experience a personalized transportation solution that fits their needs. For $3 per person per trip, riders can access any destination within the service area from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturdays. Riders can also purchase a ViaPass for a current cost of $15 per week and ride up to four times per day all week long.

Click here to learn more about the Via Rideshare Service in Arlington.

Arlington was one of the first cities in the nation to offer on-demand ridesharing as an innovative public transportation solution. The service, which aligns with the City Council priority to Enhance Regional Mobility, is designed to provide affordable transportation to key areas of Arlington, allowing riders to access entertainment, shopping and dining options, work or school, and even medical appointments.

The current Via service area is bounded by Lamar Boulevard on the north, Fielder Road on the west, State Highway 360 on the east and Interstate 20 on the south and includes major destinations such as Downtown, UT Arlington, major hospitals, the Entertainment District, the Parks Mall, Arlington Highlands, and the CentrePort TRE Station. This area serves approximately 170,000 residents and 92,000 jobs.

Next year, the service area will expand to capture some neighborhoods, businesses and other popular destinations east of SH 360.

The estimated cost for the one-year renewal is $1,802,375, with the City providing a portion of the funding in amount not to exceed of $995,000 and the Federal Transit Administration providing the remaining funding in an amount not to exceed $807,375. Approximately $300,000 of fare revenue will also support the program.

 

4 thoughts on “Arlington’s Via Rideshare Transportation Program to Continue in 2019”

  1. As an additional thought: https://aquicore.com/blog/everyone-want-public-transit-pay/

    PT rarely pays for itself. From the article.
    “This figure is often referred to as the “farebox recovery” rate. That doesn’t even start to touch the cost of constructing the system or fixing problems when something goes wrong, and again, that’s the best it gets. In other cities, as much as 89 percent of operating costs are covered by government subsidies.”

    14.3% is pretty good then!

    I’m into the idea of innovations to public transit, especially in a metroplex that abhors it.

  2. The article is inaccurate. The contract is for over $2.1 million of which the funds collect from riders cover the difference, less than 14.3% of the full contract.

    1. Thank you so much for the note, Richard. I have now added the fare revenue into the article as a funding source for the contract renewal.

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