January 7, 2022 (New York, New York) — May Mobility, a pioneer of autonomous vehicle (AV) technology and shuttle operations, and Via, the global leader in TransitTech, have together launched three public autonomous vehicles services in just eight months in Arlington, TX, Grand Rapids, MI, and Ann Arbor, MI — demonstrating the partnership’s success in rapidly launching complex, flexible, and scalable autonomous vehicle deployments.
May Mobility and Via’s first autonomous vehicle service, RAPID, which launched in Arlington, TX, in March, has already surpassed 20,000 rides to-date with a variety of destinations across Downtown Arlington and the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) campus. The services in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor, which launched in August and October 2021, respectively, both also continue to grow in ridership month-by-month.
While on-demand, dynamically-routed, shared AV services have been historically difficult to implement over any time period, Via and May have launched three services of this type in eight months. Each of the three services is customized to meet the needs of the city and community it serves. Despite the variety of localities, rider demographics, and transit needs across Arlington, Grand Rapids, and Ann Arbor, each service has successfully provided effective, efficient driverless transportation services available to all — demonstrating how AVs reach their full potential when they are deployed as part of mass transit.
Data collected from the City of Arlington’s RAPID service to-date illustrates that when AVs are deployed as part of mass transit and scaled efficiently, they can serve as an accessible, convenient way to travel:
- More than 60% of riders use RAPID to get to essential destinations including work, school, medical places, or shopping.
- An overwhelming amount — nearly 90% — of riders agreed or strongly agreed they would ride RAPID again in the future, with a vast majority agreeing that booking their trip and boarding the autonomous vehicle with Via’s rider app and in-vehicle passenger screen was easy.
- After riding RAPID, 80% of riders agreed or strongly agreed that AVs can increase the convenience of travel.
The 20,000 rides milestone in Arlington comes just over a year from when Via and May Mobility announced their partnership in November 2020. The collaboration aims to extend both companies’ reach into on-demand autonomous mobility on a global scale. The partnership involves integrating Via’s TransitTech software into May Mobility’s existing autonomous vehicles platform to support fleet management, booking, routing, passenger and vehicle assignment, and rider experience.
“At Via, we believe that for autonomous vehicles to reach their full potential as part of large-scale transit networks, they must be on-demand, dynamically routed, and shared,” said Cariann Chan, SVP of Business at Via. “Our three services with May Mobility demonstrate how launching highly-customized, public AV services using a common software platform is possible for a variety of use cases and geographies. We couldn’t be more proud of the success we have seen in each market during a short period of time.”
“May has a strong vision on how shared autonomous vehicles can be deployed to complement existing transit and bring value to communities,” said Shana Downs, Director of Sales and Channel Management at May Mobility. “Utilizing Via's technology has helped us take that vision to the next level and continue our track record of bringing tangible benefits to riders and communities today.”
Via and May Mobility look forward to continuing to help cities and communities introduce autonomous vehicle networks as a way to expand access to efficient, equitable, and sustainable public transportation across the country.
May Mobility is a leader in autonomous vehicle technology development and deployment. With more than 300,000 autonomous rides to date, May Mobility is committed to delivering safe, efficient and sustainable shuttle solutions designed to complement today’s public transportation options. The company’s ultimate goal is to realize a world where self-driving systems make transportation more accessible and reliable, the roads safer, and encourage better land use in order to foster more green, vibrant, and livable spaces. For more information, visit maymobility.com.
Via builds innovative software to enable our customers—cities, transit agencies, transport operators, school districts, universities, and corporations—to transform their legacy transportation systems into advanced digital networks. As pioneers of the TransitTech category, Via’s mission is to expand access to efficient, affordable, and sustainable transportation. Via’s software enables organizations to digitize their existing transportation networks and launch new and innovative services, simultaneously lowering operating costs and increasing quality of service. Our software is used in over 500 communities in more than 35 countries around the world.