On-Demand Rides for People with Disabilities and Older Adults
A Minneapolis ridehailing service - think Uber and Lyft - is raising funds to bring a new, meaningful spontaneous transportation alternative to older adults and people with disabilities. John Doan, the Assistant Director for Transportation for Hennepin County, Minn. (which is Minneapolis and the surrounding area), has created a startup called Mobility 4 All that is seeking funding to expand its door-through-door version of Uber.
Doan is well aware of the problem of transportation for people with disabilities because of the significant disability of his brother, who helped take care of Doan growing up and eased the transition of emigrating from Vietnam to the US when they were children. Doan's brother has early onset dementia and multiple sclerosis (MS), which makes independent navigation of transit difficult and smartphone use impossible. "With his brother and others like him in mind, Doan founded Mobility 4 All, an app, web portal, and call center that offers a “kinder, gentler” ride-hailing service providing on-demand and scheduled rides."
Mobility 4 All goes beyond typical ridehailing companies because it trains its drivers and performs a background check. Fares are determined on a point basis, with the plan being that organizations and families will be able to purchase points - meaning rides - for individuals who need them.
Singapore Goes One Step Further - Easy Fare Payment for People with Disabilities
Singapore has ben consistently ahead of the curve on technology for transit. For the past few years, Singapore has been testing and engaged in pilot programs for autonomous vehicles. Now the island nation is planning pilot projects for both on-demand bus service for areas not well served by transit and physically-hands-off fare payment service for people with disabilities. People with disabilities will pay fares, but - through use of an app on a smartphone - their fares will be automatically deducted from an account. App users will not have to tap anything, show a fare card, take out money, or do any other physical act in order to pay a transit fare.
The mission of the Transit Planning 4 All project, sponsored by the Administration for Community Living, is to demonstrate the value that inclusive processes can bring to community transportation efforts. For publications and information that demonstrate the range and possibilities of inclusive planning projects, visit the Resources page of this website.