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GRTC Pioneers CARE On-Demand Service

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The Greater Richmond Transit Company has announced a pioneering mobility solution for paratransit customers, “CARE On-Demand.” GRTC’s Board of Directors voted at their monthly business meeting this morning to award a contract to UZURV to deliver CARE On-Demand service for one pilot year. Beginning August 1, 2017, CARE customers can benefit from this precedent-setting pilot program with greater flexibility in meeting their mobility needs.

UZURV Founder, Matt Donlon, says, “We know this partnership with GRTC Transit System will help us both find solutions to make this pilot paratransit service work here in RVA and set the precedent for other transit agencies across the country. UZURV knows the need for an on-demand travel reservation system.”

All CARE customers are eligible for CARE On-Demand (C-VAN customers are not eligible). The benefits of this unique partnership to customers include: direct, non-stop service; requesting a trip for same-day service; flexibility to schedule a reservation up to 30 days in advance; freedom to ride solo; ability to bring guests, a Personal Care Assistant (PCA), or a service animal; ability to travel anywhere within the GRTC CARE service area; and the option to request favorite driver(s).

Initially during this pilot, a limited number of CARE On-Demand trips will be offered Monday to Friday from 7AM to 6PM and will be on a first-come, first-served basis. More trips and potentially extended service hours will be offered over time as the pilot program grows.

The cost for a CARE On-Demand ride is $6.00. GRTC will pay for up to an additional $15.00 of the cost of the ride. Any additional cost will be the customer’s responsibility, and the customer will know in advance what the total cost will be of their trip.

CARE On-Demand customers may begin making reservations through UZURV on August 1, 2017 by calling the UZURV Call Center at (804)-499-3400. UZURV is currently developing an app update to also enable CARE On-Demand reservations on smart devices; this additional reservation option will be available at a later date during the pilot.

When making a reservation, the customer receives a description of their assigned driver, vehicle, and the type of Transportation Network Company (TNC) picking them up. Customers may also request specific amenities or special accommodations, such as low-entry vehicles or trunk space for personal items. UZURV assigns a pick-up time for the customer – a “window” consisting of no earlier than 15 minutes before or 15 minutes after the scheduled pick-up time.  It is UZURV’s standard practice to arrive on time for a scheduled pick-up. If a trip is scheduled more than a day in advance, customers will receive a reminder call the day before the reservation.

Customers requiring mobility device space or special assistance are accommodated to ADA guidelines. CARE On-Demand is origin-to-destination service, including curb-to-curb and door-to-door. Drivers registered with UZURV meet GRTC’s training and customer service expectations.

GRTC’s CEO David Green said, “Both GRTC and UZURV share a mutual commitment to providing safe, effective, efficient and customer-friendly service. This partnership is also a ‘smart-city’ solution propelling Greater RVA to the forefront of mobility solutions. We look forward to hearing from CARE customers about their experiences with the pilot program and welcome their input to help us improve it and respond to the needs of the communities we serve.”

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