Capital Metro expands free ridesharing pilot program Pickup starting today

Capital Metro expanded its ridesharing pilot program Pickup on Monday, Oct. 2.

Capital Metro expanded its ridesharing pilot program Pickup on Monday, Oct. 2.

Capital Metro, the city of Austin's transit agency, is expanding its free ride-hailing pilot program, Pickup, starting Monday, Oct. 2. This expansion extends the program's operating hours as well as adds the MLK train station to its service zone.

Launched in June, Pickup previously operated Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. The service reached six-month ridership goals within its first two months of operation, according to a Sept. 26 news release from Capital Metro.

The service now operates from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays. The pilot program is scheduled to operate until May 2018.

Pickup vehicles continue to serve the area from the intersection of Manor Road and Airport Blvd. to the I-35 access road north of Rutherford Lane.

With these developments, Capital Metro is looking to test Pickup's effectiveness as a first-mile, last-mile solution, according to the news release.

To access the service, riders need to download the Pickup mobile app from their app store, register for an account and request a trip from their pickup point at a time they want and to a destination of their choosing. Their trip will then be matched with other travelers heading to the same destination, and the Pickup vehicle will arrive within 15 minutes.

Riders without access to the smartphone app can call 512-369-6200.

The Pickup app was developed in partnership with the ridesharing company Via, which operates in New York City, Chicago and Washington, D.C.
By Emma Freer
Emma Freer began covering Central Austin for Community Impact Newspaper in 2017. Her beat includes the Travis County Commissioners Court and local business news. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School in 2017.


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