What exactly is on-demand shared mobility, where does DRT and microtransit fit in? How does it work? What are best practices and lessons learnt from existing projects?
Demand responsive transit (DRT) or microtransit or on-demand shuttles have been a ‘go-to’ by transportation authorities and cities to quickly extend transit service reach. One of the main factors for this is the business model feasibility for this mode compared to the huge investment required to extend trains and regular bus services. Moreover as the name suggests, these modes are flexible to changing demand. They are both a win-win-win for cities, transit authorities and most importantly, the users.
The flexibility of on-demand microtransit means that providers can be creative when it comes to service delivery, this is important because passenger expectation has changed since the arrival of ride hailing. Transit agencies and operators are now adapting to the new reality where clients are demanding a better UI and UX on services offered. This, alongside technological innovation in the space, has brought new possibilities to public transport, introducing new modes of transport to deal with passengers that are left aside of the traditional transport networks with buses and rail.
Benefits of DRT/Microtransit Services
For the users:
Microtransit provides lifeline access for hard-to-reach areas and during off-peak times, where availability, not ridership, is the point of the service, it also offers a more convenient way for users to travel because bookings can be made on-demand, mirroring the simplicity of ride hailing apps like Uber/Lyft.
On-demand microtransit also adds a layer of safety for passengers because it also them to choose a designated pick-up spot the route eg. in coffeeshops/offices instead of waiting on the street, especially at night. For low-income households and those living in hard to reach or spread out neighbourhoods it creates an affordable alternative to owning a car, which also results in providing them access to more opportunities or services (work, education or health).
For transit operators:
Microtransit allows transit operators to offer more flexible services, instead of building out expensive fixed-route networks in low-density areas. By introducing on-demand technology, you are eliminating the need for largely empty buses to circle endlessly, which can result in an increase in service utilization while reducing wait times dramatically. It also helps transit operators to provide an affordable solution for the tricky first and last mile. Smaller buses and vans cost less and they don’t require the same licenses/permits for drivers. This also makes it attractive for employers or schools that want to provide a demand-responsive service for their employees or students.
Microtransit can create or increase transit/shared ridership in areas that are traditionally not well served by fixed route networks. Because service isn’t provided frequently, traditional bus services aren’t very useful so potential rider’s don’t even try them. On-demand microtransit can change that. Furthermore, it increases visibility and understanding of supply-demand issues because, as part of its technology, they collect location information for riders and vehicles.
One of the biggest benefits of shared mobility is congestion relief. The now famous “Lisbon study” by the OECD -ITF used an agent based modelling approach to show the impact of autonomous vehicles for European cities. It was able to show that TaxiBots combined with high-capacity public transport could remove 9 out of every 10 cars in a mid-sized European city. Microtransit shows the impact on personal car usage in real life already. In rural Sevenoaks, UK, for example, the on-demand system Go2 and Go2Direct has helped reduce personal car usage by 70%.
Microtransit/DRT: E-learning Course Breakdown
Our latest course will take you on a 3 hour mission through the microtransit universe. We dive into real-world case studies, share expert interviews and background material uncovering the key areas of success for microtransit. You will walk away understanding what a supportive policy framework looks like, the potential use cases and demographic needs associated with it and how to overcome operational challenges.
- You will receive a personalized certificate upon completion
- Watch expert interviews from industry leaders that have implemented and run DRT/microtransit
- We explore case studies that show how to do DRT (and how not to do DRT)
- You will gain access to movmi’s exclusive community
This course is broken down into four modules which build upon each other:
Module 1 lays the foundation and provides the necessary theoretical background. It answers the questions of: What is DRT/microtransit? How does it work? What are the different types of microtransit? And what is the impact on user/operators and communities?
Module 2 dives into the planning of microtransit and in particular discusses policies in Europe that make or break microtransit. You’ll walk away knowing what policies matter and take a deep-dive into different case studies.
Module 3 reviews different use cases based on different customer profiles. What are the different challenges based on different demographics? Again you’ll be able to backup the learnings with specific case studies from Europe.
Module 4 zooms out and provides an overview of the competition in the space as well as how microtransit can be anchored better in the bigger picture.
movmi Academy: Online Shared Mobility Training
movmi academy is an e-learning platform, offering up-to-date, on-demand and shared mobility training. Gain valuable knowledge by accessing our most popular shared mobility workshops and programs, all from the comfort of your own home – or on the go! It is a super-cost-effective option to replace conference visits and it can be used for ongoing reinforcement after a classroom workshop.
Our e-learning modules are easily delivered and tracked through our learning management system (LMS). We provide certificates of completion and even offer content “white label” (and in SCORM format) so you can add your own branding and identity! All programs are available to corporate groups as well as individuals who want to invest in themselves and their careers.
The Value of movmi’s Academy
- Online learning for teams and individuals located anywhere available 24/7/365.
- Highly engaging, full of case studies and expert interviews from around the globe!
- Learn the same material presented in our on-site corporate workshops!
- Self- paced learning that greatly enhances adoption and retention of the ideas and approaches.
- Exclusive access to movmi’s online community of shared mobility aficionados, partners and operators.