WeHo might offer ride service to general public

The Human Services Commission will review a new program that could expand the city’s on-demand transportation options for seniors and other WeHo residents.

At tonight’s meeting, City staff will introduce the commission to MicroTransit, described as a shared, on-demand, dynamic transportation model designed to supplement traditional fixed-route bus and train services.

The service operates via smartphones, and “fits somewhere between individual private transportation (e.g., Uber, Lyft, taxicabs) and public transit,” according to the staff report.

“The software uses live, on-the-ground information to add people traveling in the same direction into the same
vehicle, allowing passengers to be picked up and dropped off in a continuous stream that translates into a ride system that’s highly efficient and environmentally friendly. In addition to promoting operational efficiencies, MicroTransit software improves the rider experience compared to traditional demand response programs that require an advance reservation by phone. With MicroTransit, passengers can book a trip using a smartphone
application, web portal, or by calling the program’s call center.”

Currently, the city uses a service called Dial-A-Ride, a shared, curb-to-curb van program available to residents age 62 and older, plus those of any age living with a disability, which travels up to five miles away. Dial-A-Ride requires the trip to be booked up to four days in advance. Ridership has fallen from about 50 trips per day in 2016 to about 12 trips per day currently. The cost per trip is now $118, up from $61.62 just three years ago.

Adding MicroTransit to WeHo services would open up the transportation program to the general public for a small fee, according to the proposal. “An older adult or community member living with a disability would continue to be picked up and dropped off at the exact address they provide as long as it is in the program’s service area,” says the staff report. “The general public would need to walk no more than a ¼ mile to be picked up at a nearby bus stop or intersection. Having corner-to-corner service for the public helps avoid unnecessary detours and makes the service much more efficient.”

City Council will be presented with the proposal in June. If they are fans, WeHo could see a rollout in January 2023.

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Linda Faye Cauthen
Linda Faye Cauthen
16 days ago

As a disabled senior I’ve been using Dial-a-Ride for more than 10 years and have been very satisfied with their service and especially their drivers who are very sensitive to the needs of their passengers. I the city wants to make changes to its transpo services they should start with Ambiance since their app has been down since last summer. If Lyft or Uber failed to keep their apps working they would be out of business in a week.

Left Field
Left Field
15 days ago

I used Ambiance last year when I had out patient surgery. No app, I had to call. Operators were very nice. Less than 5 minute wait after calling for return pick ups. I believe the drivers were from Lyft. For me, Ambiance was a life saver.

Tom
Tom
17 days ago

As long as this doesn’t replace the WeHo City bus that’s already in place and working then fine.

Bastian
Bastian
17 days ago

Tax payers are paying $118 a trip? That’s insane, you can fly for less then that. Would be cheaper to just have seniors and disabled use Uber or Lyft then file an expense report with the city for reimbursement. They also wouldn’t have to plan 4 days in advance.

Also who is asking for micro transit for all? Most have cars, we also have buses, weho pickup, scooters, Uber, Lyft, alto and at only 3 miles wide the city is quite walkable.

Meanwhile, every other day we’re hearing about another shooting, maybe we should be redirecting money towards public safety.

Linda Faye Cauthen
Linda Faye Cauthen
16 days ago
Reply to  Bastian

Dial-a-Ride has handicapped-equipped vehicles while Lyft and Uber do not. WeHo is not “walkable” for those who cannot walk.

Bastian
Bastian
15 days ago

Uber does indeed have Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles. After entering your destination, scroll to the bottom and pick Uber WAV. They’re the same price as an Uber X, which is often cheaper than Taxi’s.

Rose
Rose
16 days ago
Reply to  Bastian

Fly them there at that cost, or do what has worked well & much less costly than creating an entirely new Public Business…..

TAXI VOUCHERS FOR THE CATEGORY this rediculous expensive WE’LL BUILD OUR TRANSPORT SYSTEM (HEADS, ASSISTANTS, COMMISSIONERS ETC..

WHY.

TAXI FAIR – WOULD GIVE ENDLESS MORE TIMES AND ADVANCE PLANNING OF AT LEAST 4, HOURS.

The time to book and the time to arrange so far advance to instant, save how how quickly toe tranche if Cabs sitting around in WeHo for next request for a taxi.

Manny
Manny
17 days ago

Ever hear of “Ride-Sharing”? That didn’t last long.

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