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DC Government launches new ride sharing program to transport employees
District Government Employees can now book rides for official District business through Via, with ride expenses billed electronically to their agency.
May 9, 2019 (Washington, DC) — The Department of Public Works (DPW) recently announced a new partnership with Via to provide District government employees with a new ride sharing service. The ride sharing program minimizes the need for employees to use DC Government vehicles, eliminating maintenance, fuel, and acquisition costs. The program will also reduce fleet operating costs by nearly 20 percent from the resulting per mile rate, while also contributing towards a cleaner environment.
“We know from our previous pilot that an on-demand ride-sharing service is the fastest and most efficient way for our employees to travel for work-related activities,” said DPW Acting Director Chris Geldart. “Via is the best fit for our agencies’ needs and will result in a significant cost savings for the District over our previous fleet sharing options, whether leased or owned vehicles.”
DPW, together with the Department of for Hire Vehicles (DFHV), executed a pilot with the local taxi cab companies to determine if ride sharing was a viable option for transporting District government employees. This pilot successfully ran from June 2017 until April 2018. More than 2,100 rides were completed with 27 different agencies participating in the pilot. After a successful pilot, DPW decided to create this as a permanent program for District employees and Via was selected after a competitive bid process.
To use DPW’s new Vehicle on Demand service, employees simply download the Via app designed for their iPhone or Android device, register for an account and then use it as they would any app-based private driver service.
“We are delighted to partner with the Department of Public Works to provide an efficient and cost-effective way for employees to travel around the city,” said Alex Lavoie, Via U.S. General Manager. “Via’s vision is to provide cutting-edge mobility solutions that are smart, efficient, and help to reduce congestion and emissions here in D.C. and around the globe.”
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. For more information, visit www.platform.ridewithvia.com.
DPW is a nationally recognized leader in sustainable government fleet management practices. It maintains and fuels more than 3,000 vehicles and continuously explores options to help the nation’s capital reach its goal to reduce carbon emissions.