On-demand public mobility provider Via says residents are “flocking” to try out its new Cooee Busways transport system, launched in partnership with Transport for New South Wales and Australian transport provider Busways.
It says that, despite only starting operations on 27 May, ridership is exceeding targets and vehicle utilisation is well ahead of the project’s goals.
Called Cooee Busways, the new on-demand shared transit network provides first- and last-mile connections for residents in The Ponds, Schofields and Kellyville Ridge, linking more residents with the new Sydney Metro public transportation hubs. Residents in the city’s western suburbs have “proved their eagerness” to leave their private vehicles at home and take public transport, with more than 20,000 rides taken on the Cooee service in less than three months.
Commuters can use the service by downloading the Cooee Busways smartphone app powered by Via. Users can book rides between Schofields Train Station, Tallawong Metro station, or Rouse Hill Metro station, and anywhere within the service zone highlighted within the app.
The project says ridership increased by more than 50% between June and July, with 55% of riders saying they previously used a private vehicle to make the journey. 4% stated they had sold their car since using Cooee Busways, with a further 43 percent considering selling their vehicle.
The project adds that the Cooee service maintains a significant utilisation rate, seeing a 75% increase in the first eleven weeks. During the morning and evening commuting hours, more than twice as many riders use Cooee Busways than originally projected.
It’s estimated this has saved more than 21,000 vehicle kilometres by sharing a ride compared to driving a private vehicle, saving nearly five metric tons of CO2 vehicle emissions.
“Via’s technology is redefining mobility across the globe, and we’re thrilled to see such a positive reaction from Cooee Busways riders since launching the new on-demand service,” Daniel Ramot, co-founder and CEO of Via, said. “This project proves that the easier it is to take public transport, the more people will reliably choose it over their private vehicle.”
“We are ecstatic over the success of the Cooee Busways service so far. To see ridership grow this quickly in a short space of time has been nothing short of a great achievement for the teams behind the project. It wouldn’t have been possible without Transport for NSW and Via working with us to deliver this futuristic passenger transport service, now,” Busways’ Managing Director, Byron Rowe, said.
“We’re getting people out of their cars, easing traffic congestion, freeing up parking spots, and making the integrated transport network work better for people. The execution from the teams involved has been outstanding — from using the right technology, to picking the area, designing the service, choosing the vehicles and kicking it all off with a proper marketing campaign.”