Program to improve Rochester transportation options to expand

A City of Rochester pilot program to improve transportation options will be expanded over the next three years and operations will be taken over by the Regional Transit Service.

Mayor Lovely Warren announced the changes to the Rochester Vanpool Pilot Project on Nov. 1, according to information from city officials. The concept of van pooling was introduced in the fall of 2016 as a ride-share arrangement with groups of at least 15 commuters. Each group had a volunteer designated driver with daily trips to and from a workplace. Participants each paid a set monthly fee, with routes tailored to the needs of the various groups.

As part of the planned expansion and transfer of operations, RTS will use subcontractor Enterprise Rideshare to increase the number of Vanpool vans to at least 30 over the next three years based on job availability and consumer demand.

During the one-year pilot phase, two Vanpool vehicles were in operation and provided transportation for 12 to 20 commuters to jobs at Del Lago Casino in Waterloo and a Canandaigua manufacturing plant, Pactiv Packaging.

The expansion will be funded through a $1 million grant the city received in April from the New York State Department of Transportation’s Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. The funds will cover a portion of the van leasing costs.

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