The new first- and last-mile service will support five major Sound Transit Link light rail stations
April 16, 2019 (Seattle, WA) — Via, the world’s leading provider and developer of on-demand shared mobility solutions, announced today a new microtransit deployment in Seattle, Washington aiming to connect more residents to public transportation. In partnership with King County Metro, Sound Transit and the City of Seattle, the new service brings on-demand connections to five transit hubs, offering first- and last-mile service in southeast Seattle and Tukwila at no additional charge.
Starting April 16, Via will offer service to five Sound Transit Link light rail stations: Mount Baker, Columbia City, Othello, Rainier Beach, and Tukwila International Boulevard. Customers also have the choice to hop on board one of the many Metro bus routes that connect to the Link light rail stations, further connecting the residents of King County.
“Via’s technology is redefining mobility across the globe, and we are thrilled to partner with King County Metro, an innovation-forward agency, to provide residents with a convenient, affordable, and congestion-reducing dynamic transportation alternative,” said Daniel Ramot, Co-founder and CEO of Via. “Via’s powerful passenger matching and vehicle routing algorithm is the solution to solving the first-and-last mile challenge, seamlessly integrating into the existing public transit infrastructure to connect residents to transit hubs in their communities.”
The year-long pilot project is partly funded by $2.7 million from the voter-approved Seattle Transportation Benefit District. Sound Transit also successfully applied for a Mobility on Demand Sandbox grant from the Federal Transit Administration to test the effectiveness of providing on-demand ride-share connections to transit stations.
“We are making it more convenient than ever to hop on board our high-capacity regional transit system,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “The on-demand service we are bringing to southeast Seattle and Tukwila reflects our commitment to outstanding customer service, making it easy to take transit to work, school, or play, and back home again.”
Commuters, students, and visitors can download the Via app or call 206-258-7739 to book a ride. All ORCA public transportation passes are accepted upon boarding Via vehicles and will automatically apply as a transfer toward a Metro bus or Link light rail trip. Standard Metro fares apply.
Via to Transit will make it more convenient for customers to connect with the region’s growing transit system. On-demand services like this make it easier for commuters who do not own a car or prefer not to drive and park, live within a long walking distance of a transit hub, or can’t find open spaces at park-and-rides to take transit.
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 60 launched and pending deployments in more than 15 countries. To learn more about Via, visit www.platform.ridewithvia.com.
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.