Oakland, Calif.’s Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District (AC Transit), announced that after eight months of beta-testing, AC Transit Flex will begin its one-year pilot operation on Monday. Flex is a dynamic reservation-based transit service that eliminates the wait and wonder of when a bus will arrive. Now, with the click of a mouse or telephone call, Flex riders enjoy an array of choices for day, time, and location of travel.
Flex, is a pilot program that was developed as a transit alternative in service areas with lower demand ridership. The pilot’s design employs smaller 12 seats buses (each fully-ADA compliant with Clipper Card readers and fare boxes) and offer riders the choice of which existing Line 275 bus stop they would like to begin and end their travel. To test the success of this transit model, AC Transit will temporarily suspend operation of Line 275 starting Monday and continuing through March 2018, with the possibility of line resuming full operation at that time.
Flex Service operates in Castro Valley, Newark, Union City, and Fremont using 12 seat passenger buses. Each Flex is outfitted with navigation software called MobilityDR — developed by DemandTrans Solutions. MobilityDR gives Flex Operators turn-by-turn directions to reach a reserved rider faster.
“In fact, during beta-testing we collected eight months of data that revealed that nearly 30 percent of Flex riders completed their travels in as few as 10 minutes,” says Michael Hursh, GM. “Equally impressive, is that eliminating the multiple stops of a traditional bus route now means 20 percent of Flex riders are completing their daily trips in less than five miles.”