Arlington is partnering with Via to launch new on-demand ridesharing service in the city as they move to discontinue the MetroArlingtonXpress bus service.
Beginning Monday, Riders can book a seat in a six-passenger Mercedes-Benz van for just $3 per trip.
The service, which has no fixed routes or schedules, is currently only available in select areas (see a map), but will eventually grow to include more of the city. Initially the service area will encompass the downtown and cultural arts district, UTA and the entertainment district as well as the area around Arlington Memorial Hospital.
Later this month, on Dec. 12 and Dec. 29, DART will hold two public hearings, one open and one closed, to discuss eliminating the MetroArlingtonXpress route. Without funding and support from the city of Arlington, DART will not continue to operate the service.
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The MAX route was a pilot program that for four years moved people between Centreport and two stops inside the Arlington area that will now served by Via.
“We are at the beginning of an exciting transportation technology revolution. And Arlington’s Via Rideshare Pilot Program is the latest example of our City’s willingness to explore innovative transportation technology solutions for our residents, employees, students and visitors,” Mayor Jeff Williams said during Monday’s launch celebration in Downtown Arlington.
Customers riding Via will also be able to ride to the TRE Centreport/DFW Airport Station, where they can then catch a commuter train to Dallas or Fort Worth.
Via plans to expand to include more of the city between Interstates 20 and 30 by next summer, thereby serving major retail destinations such as the Parks Mall and Arlington Highlands -- areas that were not covered by MAX.
The Arlington City Council approved the pilot program with Via in November. The company said they first launched in New York City in September 2013 and currently operates in New York City, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., where they provide more than 1.5 million rides per month.
The Via rideshare service is available in Arlington Monday through Saturday, with service hours from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturdays. Accessible vehicles are available for customers who use wheelchairs.