The following press release was sent to the Bloomingtonian Monday:
“FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 2, 2022
For more information, please contact:
Zac Huneck, Planning & Special Projects Manager
Bloomington Public Transportation Corporation
[email protected] or 812-336-7433 ext.106
Andrew Krebbs, Communications Director, Office of the Mayor
[email protected] or 812-349-3406
Bloomington Transit Announces the Replacement of Late Evening Service with Uber/Lyft Delayed Until June
Bloomington, Ind.–Bloomington Transit (BT) is announcing the delay of a plan to replace late evening service on most routes, with those trips to be provided through partnerships with Uber and Lyft. The new service delivery method was originally announced to take effect on May 9, 2022, and has been delayed to June 2022. The delay will allow Bloomington Transit to gather existing ridership data to better compare the success of the program, conduct further outreach to educate riders on the program, and finalize the remaining details of the pilot program with platform providers. All fixed routes will continue to operate their normal late evening hours until the program goes live in June.
The replacement of late evening service is a response to the ongoing driver shortage experienced by BT, along with transit agencies across the country. To confront the driver shortage, BT has already scaled back services on high-frequency routes by 15 percent compared to pre-pandemic levels, and additional reductions to late evening service—during which time ridership is significantly reduced—are targeted to provide additional relief for drivers. Partnerships with Uber and Lyft will allow BT to continue to provide mobility options for riders, despite the unavailability of transit drivers.
The Uber and Lyft partnerships will allow riders to hail trips directly through those app-based platforms. If trips are within the designated service area and taken during the service period of 9:00 p.m.-midnight, riders may enter a discount code that will activate a BT subsidy of up to $19 per trip. Riders are responsible for the first $1 of the trip, and any cost over $20. During the service period, riders who use mobility devices and cannot enter Uber or Lyft vehicles may call BT dispatch for a ride to be provided by BT using a wheelchair-accessible vehicle.