DALLAS — Commuting around greater Dallas can be interesting, especially for commuters like Sabrina Mitchell, who relies on Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) service daily.
"As soon as you get to where you need to go, it should be a bus there," Mitchell said as she waited for a bus at the UNT-Dallas metro station.
Improving service options is something DART administrators are regularly working to address.
DART President and Executive Director Gary Thomas explained, "The transportation world, or transit world, is changing around us and changing very, very, quickly."
That’s why Thomas is announcing a new partnership with Uber, beginning this week. The popular ride-share company is teaming up with DART to offer pool rides for customers traveling through specific zones where there may be limited access to transit service.
Thomas said, "That's what this is really all about, is how do we give our customers a better experience? A shorter trip time? Easier access to get to work, to get to the hospital, to get to wherever they're going."
The new UberPool rides will operate in four specific areas, or zones, including DART’s UNT-Dallas Station, Buckner Station, Parker Road Station, and Northwest Plano Park and Ride lots.
The UNT-Dallas station zone includes UberPool rides to areas around I-20 and Texas 342 including the Inland Port. Commuters can order UberPool rides to Rylie and Kleberg from the Buckner Station’s zone. Trips around Legacy, Far North Plano, and North Central Plano can be accessed around the parker Road Metro Station zone.
Nirveek De is Head of Product Agency Solutions at Uber. He says his team has been working on the partnership with DART about one year.
"If you are going to and from these transit stops, it's going to be introductory fare. It's going to be free," De said.
Commuters may take up to two free UberPool trips from an eligible DART station per day. Riders are allowed up to two UberPool trips from point-to-point locations inside the eligible zone at $3 per day. Both services are offered Monday – Friday between 5 a.m. and 8 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
The UberPool rides are app based. The rides can be accessed through DART’s Go-Pass app (which allows cash options) or the Uber app.
De explained, "Whenever a rider wants to go from point a to point b, we want to make sure that they have all possible options in front of them."
Commuters like Sabrina Mitchell says she likes the idea of having options.
For more information about the new UberPool rides, click here.