November 18, 2016
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HART Unveils 'HyperLINK'; App Offers First, Last Mile Connections

At ceremonies Nov. 14, the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) in Tampa, FL, launched what officials are calling the nation’s first app-based public transit agency-operated rideshare program: HART HyperLINK, a pilot program subsidized by the state to provide fully accessible first and last mile service in targeted areas of the county.

The HART HyperLINK program covers an area with about a three-mile radius surrounding four designated public transit stops. Passengers use the app to book the on-demand rides—which cost $3—to or from a bus stop. The service is also available through HART’s call center, and all vehicles are ADA accessible.

“Innovative solutions to transit opportunities are helping HART move beyond the bus. Everyone benefits when we connect communities to our system,” said HART Chief Executive Officer Katharine Eagan. “We all know how important equal access to public transit is for jobs, schools and recreation. We are optimistic that residents will embrace the immediate benefits that HyperLINK service brings to our region.”

Transdev created the HyperLINK platform and worked with HART to provide equal access for all residents. Dick Alexander, executive vice president of business development at Transdev, called the new service “a win for passengers … a win for transit agencies … [and] a win for the local economy.”

HART spokesperson Sandra Morrison said, “We’re aware of other agencies that are partnering directly with the rideshare firms and paying part of their fares. To the best of our (and Transdev’s) knowledge, no other transit agency is using an app for real-time dispatch of a small vehicle that goes essentially anywhere in a zone.” 

HART CEO Katharine Eagan, center, cuts the ribbon to introduce the app-based pilot program, HART HyperLINK, which provides first- and last-mile service options. Transdev executive Dick Alexander is second from left.

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