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Remember back in the day when you’d open the Uber app and just see cars? Well, that’s all about to change. Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi is in Washington, DC today to make a wide-ranging announcement on Uber’s plans to integrate a variety of new transportation options to its app, including bikes, car-sharing vehicles, and public transportation like buses and trains. Uber will also share more of its data on traffic patterns and curbside usage with cities in an effort to become “true partners to cities for the long term,” Khosrowshahi said.

It’s a bold expansion into new modes of transportation for a company that is still trying to shake its reputation for rule-breaking and only a few weeks ago suffered one of its worst setbacks to date after an Uber self-driving car killed a pedestrian in Arizona. But since taking the helm last year, Khosrowshahi has been rushing to remake the company in his own image. Acquiring dockless bike-share company Jump earlier this week was his first major deal. And today’s announcement is the next step in his plan to transform Uber from a mere ride-sharing company into a global marketplace for transportation.

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The Westchester County Department of Public Works and Transportation recently completed a "Westchester County Bee-Line System First and Last Mile Mobility Study."

The report reviews several examples of how TNCs have been used by other transit agencies and municipalities throughout the country to address first and last mile challenges, and discusses the issues to consider if such a partnership were to be implemented in Westchester County. Examples include:

  • Replacement of Under-Utilized Fixed Route Bus Service
  • First-Mile/Last-Mile Connections to Commuter Rail Stations and Bus Stops
  • Off Peak Jobs Access
  • Market Expansion through Micro-Transit
  • Technology Platforms
  • Paratransit

The report recommends that Westchester County initiate a pilot program which would include eliminating one or more of the least efficient routes in the Bee-Line System, or providing a new service that increases mobility where there is an unmet demand.

This is a white paper prepared for the U.S. Department of Transportation Office of Planning, Environment, and Realty Federal Highway Administration.

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