RTD, Uber Transit debut on-demand service for Access-a-Ride customers

Pilot program, available during peak service hours on weekdays, offers wheelchair-accessible vehicles

The Regional Transportation District (RTD) announced today that it is collaborating with Uber Transit to pilot an on-demand service for Access-a-Ride customers in select ZIP codes within the agency’s district. The pilot period extends through November.

Uber Transit will help offer RTD Access-a-Ride customers a dedicated ride alternative – including the ability to choose a wheelchair-accessible (WAV) Access-a-Ride vehicle, provided through a partnership with Uber and MV Transportation. All trips must be booked through the Uber app and meet the following criteria:

  • Trips must begin or end in four pilot service ZIP codes: 80013, 80014, 80015 and 80016.
  • All UberX, XL and, now, WAV trips must be taken during peak service hours on weekdays (6-9 a.m. and 2-5 p.m.).
  • Four trips per day, and a total of 60 trips per month, are allowed per eligible Access-a-Ride customers.
  • These new software-as-a-service WAV trips will be subject to familiar payment structures for Access-a-Ride customers, with the first $2 charged to the payment method tied to the customer’s Uber account, and RTD covering up to an additional $20 of each fare. If the total trip cost is over $22, the customer will be responsible for that additional balance.

”RTD has been working for nearly two years to deploy a fully accessible on-demand solution for our Access-a-Ride customers,” said Paul Hamilton, senior manager of paratransit services. “With the addition of wheelchair-accessible vehicles, we will now be able to fully test response time and customer satisfaction on a small scale.  Our goal is to be able to develop a permanent on-demand solution for the entire RTD service area by next year.”

The Uber Transit pilot is open to current, certified RTD Access-a-Ride customers living in the eligible ZIP codes. To take part:

  • Email [email protected] to let RTD know of a desire to enroll in the program.
  • Customers will be emailed a link to a form to complete, to confirm interest in participating in the program and agree to terms of service. 
  • Once that form has been completed, customer information will be sent to Uber, which will send an email inviting customers to confirm participation with RTD.
  • Access-a-Ride administrative staff can field additional questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. at 303-299-2847.

“We are thrilled to partner with Denver RTD to provide on-demand public transit to even more riders in the Mile High metropolitan region,” said David Reich, head of Uber Transit. “With this launch, Denver is the first city in the world to launch Uber Transit Journey Planning and transit ticketing in the Uber app while also leveraging Uber’s software to provide the most equitable, connected and accessible transportation possible.”

RTD and Uber Transit’s previous world-first collaborations benefiting Denver metro customers both took place in 2019. Journey Planning allows customers to use Uber to plan transit trips with real-time information and end-to-end directions, and transit ticketing enables them to seamlessly purchase tickets and ride RTD services – all from the Uber app.