On-Demand Shuttle Pilot Program

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On June 18, 2019 the Cupertino City Council approved an 18-month pilot program for an on-demand shuttle, powered by a company called Via. 

Why Cupertino Needs a Shuttle

Cupertino is currently in a transit desert, regional rail service such as Caltrain, VTA Light Rail, BART, and Amtrak do not serve us. Yet thousands of workers travel to and from Cupertino daily, with growing traffic congestion and air pollution. Faced with few options, most people resort to driving alone. We are excited to introduce Via, an on-demand shuttle solution that will provide transportation services anywhere in Cupertino and connect the City to Caltrain for the first time ever. The shuttle system will feature 10 ADA accessible, 6-passenger Mercedes Metris vans (with bike racks!).

Where are Station Stops?

An on-demand shuttle has no station stops or routes. Instead it uses small vans requested by a mobile App or by phone. Once a ride is requested, the app will show the van’s location and arrival time, usually within 15-17 minutes. Able-bodied riders are asked to walk a short distance to the shuttle (200-300') to make the trips faster. Once aboard, as you make your way to your destination, other riders board that are heading in a similar direction. Back-end technology pairs riders with similar destinations making for less waiting time and faster trips! Mobility impaired riders do not need to walk and can request door-to-door service.

How Much will it Cost?

Fares are set at $5 per ride. Discounted fares will be available for low-income riders and De Anza College students. Weekly and monthly packages will be available offering 4 rides per day. Some destinations like El Camino Hospital and Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara may have a slightly higher fare as they are outside Cupertino, however all other trips, including to Caltrain stations will be $5. Fare discounts and packages will be released in the coming months.

When Can I Ride? -  Who Can Use It?

The service area is anywhere within the City of Cupertino (including Rancho San Antonio Open Space), with limited locations outside of Cupertino, including the Sunnyvale Caltrain Station, Mountain View Caltrain Station, Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara, and El Camino Hospital. Riders ages 14 and older may ride (minors with parental consent) and you do not need to be a Cupertino resident to ride.

When Does it Start?

Service is anticipated to begin in fall 2019. Once operational the program will run for 18 months, the duration of the pilot program. Once a contract has been negotiated with Via, staff will bring the contract to Council for authorization, along with a public outreach campaign strategy. 

Additional info

For additional information please contact the project manager, Chris Corrao either by email: chrisc@cupertino.org or by phone (408) 777-3174.