TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — StarMetro's new Dial-A-Ride On-Demand Pilot Program will increase customer choice, flexibility, and on-time performance.
The biggest change is it will now offer same-day, on-demand trip requests to help eliminate long wait times for unplanned appointment changes customers may have.
Customers will also have a wider range of services and will be able to choose a service provider with existing transportation services and participating rideshare companies known as Transportation Network Companies.
The new program will also aim to provide more trip volume and reduce the average cost per trip.
StarMetro Transit Director, Angela Baldwin, says there's an increase in customer demand as COVID restrictions relax and this will help fill those gaps.
"We currently have 1200 active users who are forming 400 average weekday trips we're estimating to return to pre-pandemic ridership of 650 average weekday trips by fall. It will be an extension of our current program while providing services, enhancements, and additional options for flexibility."
The new 2-year pilot program will be the exact same as Dial-A-Ride by providing curb-to-curb and door-to-door transportation to seniors over 65 and individuals at any age with a disability that prevents them from riding on StarMetro's fixed routes.
Customers will pay their normal fare of 2 dollars and fifty cents and the city will cover the rest as long as it is below negotiated contractor rates. The city expects it to be cost-neutral and will apply for grants along the way to fund eligible parts of the program.
The new pilot program will undergo in-depth evaluation to determine its success and whether or not it will continue after the initial 2-year period.
Read more here.