3 cities and agencies deploying integrated mobility solutions• 3 min read
A growing number of transportation providers across the nation are turning to integrated mobility to suit their unique needs.
The future of transit is integrated — and that’s according to the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).
Integrated Mobility Solutions (IMS) create all-inclusive transit networks: Where operators can run all of their services from one system, riders can view all of their options in one app, or both. There are multiple benefits to IMS, like how it makes transit networks more responsive to changes in demand, turning transportation into a key part of a COVID-recovery plan. Let’s take a look at some of the forward-thinking communities taking steps towards a more integrated future.
For years, Golden Empire Transit (GET) contracted with several different legacy software providers to run microtransit and paratransit. These siloed solutions for different parts of the network hampered system-wide performance and internal efficiency, prompting GET’s team to search for a way to bring all of their demand-responsive modes under one technology platform — enter IMS.
Now, on top of utilizing a single tech provider, GET is further consolidating by dynamically sharing drivers and vehicles across its services — otherwise known as commingling. This fleet sharing reduces empty time and improves utilization numbers.
Their new, integrated approach also enables GET to leverage the same operational resources across paratransit, microtransit, and a new non-emergency medical transportation service so dispatchers only need to learn one intuitive platform. Meanwhile, robust data and performance reporting allows the team to make service adjustments informed by operational metrics and the distinct needs of each user base.
In rural Sussex County, Delaware, the Delaware Transit Corporation (DTC) is a prime example of how integrated mobility can build more equitable, efficient, and accessible public transit. Before introducing an IMS system in April of 2021, Georgetown and Millsboro — two key employment and health services hubs in the county — offered limited bus services using a flex route model.
Now, DTC offers more flexible service, with shorter wait times, through a microtransit service that is thoroughly integrated with its fixed route system. DTC has introduced a rider app that allows riders to both book a microtransit ride and connect to fixed route buses throughout the service zone.
Residents of Georgetown and surrounding communities are now able to more easily view and understand all of their available transportation options, thus expanding their access to agricultural, medical, and manufacturing jobs, while reducing wait times by 50%. Now the service moves more than 400 residents on average every week, with 40% of them being regular riders. The FTA rewarded DTC for their efforts, granting them over $300,000 of highly-competitive federal funding, which helped them to defray the cost of the project.
Summit County, UT
Summit County, situated in the mountains of northern Utah, launched a new transit agency with integrated mobility at its core. The agency is now seamlessly providing multi-modal rides — including fixed route, on-demand, and paratransit services — from a single operations platform. Riders can enjoy the convenience of getting information on different types of trips and mapping out their traveling plans all from one single rider app.
Fixed route lines serve high-demand areas while 21 dedicated on-demand vehicles are available for first-and-last-mile trips to fixed route stops, filling gaps in low demand areas. To increase utilization across the network, drivers of accessible vehicles pick up microtransit and paratransit riders within the same shift, enabling greater aggregation through inserting route-viable, on-demand trips in between pre-scheduled trips. As a result, the combined micro- and paratransit service has improved utilization by 150% over the paratransit service offered beforehand.
County officials utilize ridership and operational data to make informed service adjustments and optimize overall system efficiency, with the goal of building an unbeatable transportation experience for local residents, commuters, and tourists. Now, more than 3000 residents are using this integrated transit service every day with a significantly improved riding experience.
In the end, the concept of integrated mobility is all about finding new ways to bring flexibility — and thus, resilience — to transit networks. If you think your transportation service might have a need for cost savings, efficiency gains, and/or greater visibility for riders, we’d love to help you craft an integrated solution custom-built for your community.