Pickup has grown to a total of five service zones within just three months of launching the popular on-demand public transportation service
September 5, 2019 (AUSTIN, TEXAS) — Via, in partnership with the leading Austin public transportation provider Capital Metro, has officially launched four new zones of its popular Pickup on-demand public transportation service, bringing the dynamic shuttle to even more residents. The rapid success of the Pickup deployment is a testament to the appetite in Austin for dynamic on-demand mobility solutions.
Pickup first launched in June 2019 in the Austin suburb of Manor, with Capital Metro adding four new zones in Austin starting in September: Walnut Creek, East ATX, Northeast ATX, and Exposition. The new zones serve the four areas included in the MetroLink pilot program.
The swift expansion in Austin mirrors its fellow Texan city, Arlington, which also uses Via’s technology to power local public transportation. Since Via launched in Arlington in late 2017, ridership has grown 29 times larger, the service zone has expanded three times to cover almost a third of the city’s population, and there is a 94 percent daily weekday increase in ridership compared to the previous fixed-route bus system the service replaced.
It’s evident from Pickup’s tremendous expansion in its early months of operation that it is on the same path as Arlington to successfully overhaul outdated fixed-route public transit, giving residents more reliable and efficient transit options using Via’s technology.
“Pickup is an innovative way to build connections and bridge gaps that naturally occur in any transit network,” said Chad Ballentine, Capital Metro’s vice president of demand response and innovative mobility. “It provides reliable and accessible service in zones throughout the community that otherwise have limited access to transportation.”
Using the Pickup app, riders can hail a shuttle directly from their smartphone. Via’s advanced algorithms will enable multiple riders to seamlessly share the vehicle. The powerful technology will direct passengers to a nearby virtual bus stop, allowing for quick and efficient shared trips without lengthy detours, or inconvenient fixed routes and schedules.
Commuters can use the service by downloading the Pickup smartphone app powered by Via, available on iOS and Android. Those in the service zones without access to the smartphone app may call 512-269-6200. A single ride costs $1.25, the same charge as a Single Ride pass used to take MetroBus and MetroRapid services. A Capital Metro Day Pass, 7-Day Pass or 31-Day Pass will cover a Pickup ride as well. All Pickup zones are available weekdays between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., while East ATX and Northeast ATX also serve customers on Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Via has been tapped by cities and transportation players around the world to help re-engineer public transit from a regulated system of rigid routes and schedules to a fully dynamic, on-demand network. Via now has more than 70 launched and pending deployments in more than 15 countries.
Via is re-engineering public transit, from a regulated system of rigid routes and schedules to a fully dynamic, on-demand network. Via’s mobile app connects multiple passengers who are headed the same way, allowing riders to seamlessly share a premium vehicle. First launched in New York City in September 2013, the Via platform operates in the United States and in Europe through its joint venture with Mercedes-Benz Vans, ViaVan. Via’s technology is also deployed worldwide through dozens of partner projects with public transportation agencies, private transit operators, taxi fleets, private companies, and universities, seamlessly integrating with public transit infrastructure to power cutting-edge on-demand mobility.