Communities paving the way for new mobility
Mountain View Google Offices
A recent visit to the city of Mountain View, Calif., Reveals that a community is already heading towards New mobility. They have a strong system of free shuttles serving seniors and community members who do not have a personal vehicle or easy access to personal transportation.
The pilot program launched in 2015 following a partnership with Google
But more than that, the shuttles have anticipated the need to move people with disabilities and provide wheelchair lifts and wheelchair space, as well as bike racks and Wi-Fi connectivity. more than a shuttle, but it is what you might call an important part of a transportation network for the city as a whole. The service also has an application to provide real-time location of shuttles and inform passengers of the next arrival.
Operating 7 days a week on a fixed route, the shuttle also provides much-needed mobility to and from jobs, food and accommodation. Originally slated for 2019 with funding from Google, the shuttle now has dedicated funding to operate until at least 2024, and today Mountain View now operates the popular service on its own. There was clearly a need as the shuttle has provided over 700,000 trips since the pilot’s inception, but there is more. Currently, a bicycle path, a walking path, and transit production and construction are underway in the community. This transportation network responds to an increase in population and the search for out-of-the-box transportation options.
Instead of building more parking spaces for new residents at Mountain View train spaces, the city has determined that it is better for the community and the environment to reduce the use of single occupancy vehicles (SOV). and increase the availability of shuttles.
The rate of adoption of electric vehicles by residents is also encouraging for the future. Currently, 70% of residents have or plan to purchase an electric vehicle as a personal vehicle. There are 149 electric vehicle charging stations in Mountain View, clearly building an infrastructure and showing their commitment to electric vehicles.
Studies have shown the benefits of electric vehicles:
Science has proven that electric vehicles require less expensive and less frequent maintenance,
Much quieter than gasoline vehicles,
Zero exhaust emissions,
Cost per mile cheaper than gasoline or diesel vehicles,
A more sustainable vehicle to operate because electricity is renewable and gasoline is not,
Potential tax credits, and
· Shortened travel times because many roads allow electric vehicles to travel on the HOV lane, even when there is only one occupant.
Mountain View and Mayor Ellen Kamai clearly understand that the benefits to their residents, the community, and the environment are all enhanced when they include new mobility options.
The community has undertaken an AGT (Automated Guiding Transport) assessment. These are automated, driverless multi-passenger transport modules similar to those that take you through an airport from one terminal to another. Mountain View’s understanding of the political economy of autonomous vehicles and the innate benefit for communities of having a comprehensive and affordable transit system is at the forefront of what communities are doing across the country.
Communities that make these kinds of transportation investments will always have a head start, attracting industry and individuals to a community that understands and meets transportation needs.