People will soon be able to use an app on their phone to request a ride to take them anywhere from point A to B in rural Wellington County.
On Oct. 19 Wellington County will launch a pilot project for a publicly-funded rideshare transportation model called RIDE WELL that uses full-time drivers in four designated vehicles which carry up to four riders at a time.
“It's really, really important that we aren't only dependent on the cars here in the county. As we move ahead and build a community so that we wanna build in the county, it is important that we have good transportation options so this is an exciting day for us,” says Wellington County Warden Kelly Linton.
RIDE WELL will be available for anyone in the county who is of 18 between 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Customers will be able to use the service through the RIDE WELL app, company website or toll-free number.
RIDE WELL users will pay a flat $5 fee with 0.60 cents per kilometre. The maximum any person would be charged in one ride is $40.
The service takes customers up to 70km door-to-door anywhere within Wellington County and door-to-bus stop if going to the City of Guelph with two designated stops in Guelph which are the Woodlawn Road Walmart Transit Terminal and the Pergola Commons Transit Bay. Both locations are stops for Guelph Transit Bus #99.
Linton says the first objective of the program is to get individuals from point A to point B, and the second one is to make sure the county has a really solid financial model.
“It had to work, financially it had to work and that's one of the challenges you have when you have a rural transportation system. It financially has to make sense,” said Linton.
“This past year we received half a million dollars from the province of Ontario which was really really exciting news.”
He says the initiative started with a transportation study four years ago where the county was looking at the demand for a rural transit system and found that 89 per cent of the 639 participants said that they would support a rural transportation system.
Some of the things that are really important for the county of wellington is that people can get to where they need to work, people can get to their hospital appointments, their social times they have.
“I'm really excited to see this initiative taken off because we’ve seen for years that we have a rural transit need in our community.
“As a rural community with a challenge to attract young people and new workers for our businesses and with a challenge to ensure a cost-effective service, we needed to try to create something more creative.”