On April 30, Gwinnett County Transit will conclude the microtransit test launched last Sept. in Snellville. The door-to-door, on-demand bus service carried 38,898 riders through April 3 for more than 172,000 miles on 28,740 trips. TransLoc, which provided the software to operate the microtransit system, found that among the 12 cities it serves, Snellville’s microtransit program passenger count rated No. 2 behind the city of Sacramento.
Microtransit uses smaller buses designed to provide transit service in areas that lack the population to sustain regular bus routes. The Snellville service uses seven 12-passenger buses operating from 6 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday.
According to a county press release, “Passengers can call for a ride or use a special app to enter pickup and dropoff locations, a passenger count, whether a wheelchair or other mobility device is being used and a pickup time. An algorithm routes the closest bus to pick passengers up with minimal disruption for other riders. The app also shows the bus location and estimated arrival time.”
The GDOT will soon use data collected during the test to calculate what it will cost to operate the program and what fares are realistic to charge in the future. The pilot program has been free. If the numbers add up, the county hopes to renew microtransit service in Snellville by early 2020 and eventually expand the service to the Buford area.