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SEPTA and Via to Launch Transit Pilot to Increase Access to Jobs

‘SEPTA Owl Link’ Will Provide Free, On-Demand Trips for Late-Shift Workers in Lower Bucks County; Aimed at Filling ‘First-And-Last Mile’ Gap for Riders

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May 4, 2021 (PHILADELPHIA) – SEPTA and Via, the leader in TransitTech, today announced a partnership to provide free late-night on-demand transit service for workers at growing job sites in Lower Bucks County. The new service, called “SEPTA Owl Link,” begins on Monday, May 10.

SEPTA Owl Link will provide service between existing stops on bus routes 14, 56 and 66 and a growing number of local businesses that operate with late shifts. SEPTA Owl Link service will operate between 10:30 p.m. and 6 a.m., seven days a week. Customers will use their SEPTA Key Card for validation, but there will be no fare charged for Owl Link service.

SEPTA Owl Link is aimed at closing the first-and-last mile transit gap, or the distance between an existing transit stop and a destination.

“This innovative partnership with Via will provide immediate benefits to customers who are traveling to-and-from work,” said SEPTA General Manager Leslie S. Richards. “This on-demand service will help ensure that third-shift workers have safe, reliable and affordable options as they plan for job-related travel. This pilot program also gives SEPTA an opportunity to evaluate this type of first-and-last mile service for other locations.”

“Access to efficient and reliable transit can help drive economic growth for communities around the world,” said Via CEO and co-founder Daniel Ramot. “We are proud to work with SEPTA on a technology-enabled public transit solution that will provide easy access to job opportunities in greater Philadelphia.”

How to Use SEPTA Owl Link:

  • Download the SEPTA Owl Link Mobile App to make reservations, or call the SEPTA CCT Reservation Line at (215) 580-7114
  • Trips can be booked up to one week in advance, and no less than 30 minutes prior to the ride
  • Select a desired pick-up and drop-off location: Via’s technology will direct workers to a nearby “virtual bus stop” for pick-up, allowing for quick and efficient shared trips
  • For more information about this service, visit https://www.septa.org/owllink

The launch of SEPTA Owl Link is the first phase of the rollout of an “Integrated Mobility Solution” (IMS), powered by Via’s technology platform, that will provide a foundation for transit innovation in SEPTA’s network. SEPTA was awarded a trial of Via’s IMS platform after applying for Via’s competitive Grant for Integrated Mobility. The project will introduce multimodal and intermodal trip planning that will enable passengers to both view and book their entire journey between SEPTA Owl Link and local bus and train connections. Via works with more than 200 cities and transit agencies across the globe to help connect more people to transit, and for more information, visit https://ridewithvia.com/.

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