City Plots Rideshare Future

Stakeholder meeting kicks off pilot program

A Lyft car's distinctive pink mustache
by John Anderson

A rake of perceived stakeholders with a vested interest in the future of transportation networking companies (“TNCs”) in Austin will meet Wednesday evening at One Texas Center on Barton Springs Road and South First Street to begin the process of figuring out how exactly this whole pilot program looking into TNC potential in town might work.

The meeting, which isn’t currently listed on the City’s online city calendar, is being previewed as a truly introductory one wherein those attending will introduce themselves to one another and attempt to plot out the next steps moving forward. Expect individuals from the cab industry to be there, as well as various City staffers, and a few loose players. (Bar owners? Insurance companies?)

Hopefully representatives from Uber, Lyft, and whichever other TNCs have plans of moving into Austin will show up. Sidecar, exiled from Texas last year, told the Texas Tribune it has “plans to launch in Texas soon." There was a bit of a communication breakdown on the issue two weeks ago when the City told the Chronicle Uber and Lyft were more than welcome in attendance and Uber reported they looked forward to the invitation.

We’ll have an attendance report from the red carpet tomorrow. In the meantime, be careful who you ride with.

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