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Between Public and Private Mobility: Examining the Rise of Technology-Enabled Transportation Services

Date:
December 29, 2015
Topics:
Mobility Management, News, News Homepage, Transit

The new Transportation Research Board publication Between Public and Private Mobility: Examining the Rise of Technology-Enabled Transportation Services analyzes how innovative transportation services are changing mobility.  Ridesharing, carsharing, bikesharing, and microtransit may not be as readily available in rural areas, but a national poll about the use of such systems showed that 3 percent of rural respondents use them frequently.

The full report (PDF) includes several chapters of analysis, including a discussion of equity considerations.  Because technology-enabled transportation services tend to be provided by the private sector and change rapidly with evolving demand, technology, and service models, fairness and equity might not be considered by providers who are not held to the same standards as those receiving public funds.  The chapter on equity discusses access issues for rural populations, as well as racial and ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, low-income households, “unbanked” populations (because such transportation services generally require a credit card), and people without smartphones.

Although technology-enabled transportation services do not currently have great market penetration in many rural areas, this report and the associated webcast, detailed appendices, and publication 10 Facts About Using Lyft, Uber, and Taxis available here may still provide useful information for rural and small metropolitan transportation professionals with an interest in innovative mobility solutions.

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