On Monday, Phoenix-based Valley Metro Regional Public Transportation Authority unveiled a free online tool called “ShareTheRide” at www.ValleyMetro.org to help local residents track how much pollution their commute generates or find a carpool partner.
Using a Web application called RideShark – developed by Commuting Solutions of Ottawa, Canada – the “ShareTheRide” system incorporates technology and mapping features, allowing riders to personally manage their commutes, track costs or pollution, and opt in and out of actively looking for carpool partners. Ultimately, "ShareTheRide" also will allow users to join a vanpool, map the best bus or light rail route, or find a bike route.
Following a beta test period that began in April, more than 3,200 residents across greater Phoenix are using "ShareTheRide" to seek a carpool partner or track their pollution. When residents create a personal profile and log how they travel in an online calendar, an emissions calculator shows how much pollution they’ve saved or produced.
Businesses are using the tool to host internal contests that encourage employees to drive less and track how they commute to work, thereby helping businesses meet their requirements under Maricopa County’s Trip Reduction Program.
The new "ShareTheRide" system replaces a previous service through Valley Metro that only matched carpoolers.