Elevating Paratransit with On-Demand Rides

Susanna Arntz
Susanna Arntz
grtc blog

Paratransit programs need innovation. Last year, we partnered with GRTC to increase access to transportation for members with disabilities. Six months in, we have more rides than ever and are impacting an entire community in an On-Demand program that’s the first of its kind.

The Greater Richmond Transit Company (GRTC) is the primary public transportation provider for Richmond, VA. They offer 37 local routes, 10 express routes, and service over 8 million passengers every year. Following the guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the GRTC CARE program provides origin-to-destination service to individuals with disabilities who may not be reasonably able to use GRTC fixed route bus service.

To further innovate the GRTC CARE program, Roundtrip was awarded a contract to manage the CARE On-Demand program for GRTC residents. Now, CARE members have the option to book rides as they need them, when they need them. They can go off the fixed-route of the CARE vans now and enjoy same-day, direct, non-stop trips at an affordable price of $6.

In the first 90 days of using Roundtrip, CARE customers traveled over 7000 miles and successfully transitioned scheduling services from a phone-based system to an online booking portal. The average cost of a ride was $22.15 with the first $6 covered by the CARE customer.

Roundtrip has continued to get positive feedback from the team at GRTC CARE as well as our CARE on-demand riders — who we love hearing from! Here are three meaningful messages from CARE on-demand riders that we get to work with regularly:

On his first ever experience with Roundtrip:

“I used it Saturday, December 2, to go to my company Christmas party. On a personal level, I don’t have to depend on anybody from work or any of my other friends to give me rides to places.”

-John

On how our Roundtrip Navigation Center helps:

“Matt and I decided that my needs for a vehicle which could accommodate my large Rollator walker could probably be met with a sedan, by my sitting in the front and having the walker in the back seat if necessary. I asked if Matt would be on Thursday and he is off, but said he’ll explain to his colleague, Zach, what is happening and what we’ve discussed.

The world should be populated with Matt’s! This young man has renewed my optimism in humanity. If Zach and your other associates are as kind and concerned, I applaud you and the company for following the Golden Rule (Do unto others…).”

-Marianne (No, I’m not Matt’s grandmother)

On how every day is a little easier:

“I enjoy using Roundtrip because it makes transportation easier than before. Before, I had to wait for a long time. Now, I have a timely way to get to work everyday. The Navigation Center is friendly and helpful.”

-Amy

The team here at Roundtrip is so grateful to be providing transportation logistics so that we can empower our riders to have more everyday flexibility and better quality of life. We are currently working on a summer promotion for GRTC Care On-Demand riders. We will announce the details shortly!