Via, a provider and developer of on-demand public mobility solutions, introduced a new microtransit deployment in partnership with the city of Newton, Mass., called Newton in Motion, or NewMo. The new on-demand shared transit system is available to seniors living in Newton, increasing their mobility within the city and select destinations in the surrounding region.
NewMo provides any resident over the age of 60 with an efficient, reliable, and affordable way to travel within the city of Newton, as well as a number of medical facilities outside of the city’s boundaries. The on-demand service replaces an outdated taxi voucher system, which required passengers to make reservations at least 72 hours in advance.
Using the Via app, riders will be able to hail a vehicle directly from their smartphone. Via’s advanced algorithms will enable multiple riders to seamlessly share the vehicle. The powerful 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.
Seniors can use the service by downloading the Via smartphone app, available on iOS and Android, or by phone. Users can book rides Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays 9 a.m. to noon, costing as little as 50 cents to $5. In partnership with Avis, the new service will feature a fleet of Mercedes Metris vans, as well as wheelchair accessible vehicles.
Via has been tapped by cities and transportation players around the world to help re-engineer public transit from a regulated system of rigid routes and schedules to a fully dynamic, on-demand network. Via now has more than 70 launched and pending deployments in more than 15 countries.