Jersey City will become the first in New Jersey to offer an on-demand bus system in partnership with Via. The new commuting network looks to ease frustration among commuters often left dealing with overcrowded buses and unreliable schedules, while also filling the transit desert by providing more efficient connections between the north and south regions of the city.
The vendor partnership will create an innovative transit system with virtual stops and routes based on passenger demand. The technology-based transit system would be the first of its kind in the state. Areas of Jersey City identified as primary service areas will increase connectivity to other key shopping and business districts, government facilities, and PATH ferry and light rail stations.
Using the Via app, riders will be able to hail a shuttle directly from their smartphone. Via’s advanced algorithms will enable multiple riders to seamlessly share the vehicle. The technology will direct passengers to a nearby virtual bus stop within a short walking distance for pick up and drop off, allowing for quick and efficient shared trips without lengthy detours, or inconvenient fixed routes and schedules.
Via will operate at $2 per ride, with discounts for seniors and low-income residents at $1 or less. While Via will operate with 14 vehicles in Greenville and the Heights, at least 10% of the program’s fleet will be fully-electric vehicles, with a focus on increasing the number of electric vehicles in the upcoming years. Riders can request a wheelchair accessible vehicle should they indicate it is needed. This will also bring additional job opportunities to Jersey City, with Via drivers making well above the state’s minimum wage.