Smart Cities are Smart about Transportation

You’ve heard of a smartphone. You’ve probably heard of a smart home. But how smart is your city? Smartphones keep us connected to the world and the people in our lives. Smart homes connect all of your devices and give you the power to automate everything from lights to music. Smart cities connect assets, resources, and information systems so that everything from transportation to public utilities is managed efficiently.

A smart city serves ALL of its citizens

A smart city uses information and communications technology to enhance its livability, workability, and sustainability - for all of its citizens. That includes the aging and special needs population.

The number of people 65 and older in the United States is increasing by 10,000 people/day and is expected to grow to 55 million in 2020. And, more than 50 percent of non-drivers over age 65 do not leave home primarily because of a lack of transportation options.

But public transportation is very costly. The combination of an increasingly elderly and a large disabled population is placing a strain on existing transportation infrastructure. Yet, municipalities must provide solutions for all of its citizens to get around.

 

UZURV is the smart transportation solution

Efficient and effective transportation is vital to the success and economic development of a Smart City. Current special transportation solutions are outdated and are not properly serving the populations they were meant to serve.

The UZURV solution is a public + private partnership that benefits riders and municipalities. Our smart technology taps into the vast TNC resources to fill in the gaps of current municipal transit authority programs. With UZURV, riders see a complete list of driver profiles and vehicle information from which they can choose to meet their specific needs.

We can meet the requirements of any contract

UZURV’s unique ability to tap into the rideshare resource and customize it to meet the standards of compliance makes us uniquely positioned to provide bundled ADA-compliant and same day transport options, including on-demand scheduling and dispatching.

UZURV’s smart city solution launched in Richmond, Virginia August 2017 and will launch in Nashville, Tennessee February 2018.

“I am pleased to see GRTC employing a Smart City Solution to improve ADA transportation through a local technology company, UZURV.” — Levar M. Stoney, Mayor of Richmond, VA

UZURV is operating in 50 states with over 50,000 drivers on our platform. We are actively seeking local government partners to expand our ADA services. For more information on bringing smart city solutions to your municipality, download our  Smart City Solutions Info Sheet or contact sales@uzurv.com.


downtown richmond buildings and road

Community Highlight: Greater Richmond Age Wave

As you know, UZURV is very passionate about helping citizens arrange safe, reliable transportation. For special needs citizens, we partnered with GRTC in Richmond, Virginia to create the Care On-Demand program. For cancer patients, we partnered with the American Cancer Society to provide cancer patients with transportation to their treatments. These organizations know that UZURV brings an added value to the on demand service–the ability to make a reservation with a driver of your choice.

One group of citizens who could benefit from on-demand transportation is our aging population. Unfortunately the standard model of Uber and Lyft is just not accessible to everyone. Seniors need to know their driver. They need someone who knows them and can help them from the car.   Many do not use a smartphone.  That’s why, Greater Richmond Age Wave has engaged us in a conversation with other organizations in the Richmond area to help advocate for legislation that helps our seniors stay mobile and active. Their mission is to “make the Richmond Region a great place for all people to grow older.”

Neighborhood Livability Action Team

To help fulfill this mission, Greater Richmond Age Wave has formed the Neighborhood Livability Action Team – a team UZURV is proud to be a part of. The purpose of the initiative is to:

  • Increase opportunities for affordable housing, home modification services, and mobility and transportation infrastructure.
  • Improve physical infrastructure including accessibility to housing and public transportation.
  • Promote public safety and make disaster planning widely accessible.

It’s important for seniors to stay active and not become socially isolated. In fact, studies have shown that senior isolation can increase the risk of mortality, have a negative effect both physically and mentally, increase risk of dementia, and is a major risk factor for depression.

Improved access to transportation is the best way to keep our seniors active. The UZURV solution combines the economics of on demand transportation with the comfort of a personal driver. By giving our clients the ability to select their driver, and make a reservation, UZURV makes the growing resource of on demand transportation accessible allowing more people to stay active, healthy and involved.


driver using app on phone

Finalist for RVA Tech’s Annual Award Ceremony

UZURV is excited to announce that we are finalists for the 22nd Annual “Academy Awards of Technology” in two categories – Emerging Small Business and Technology Builder. We are honored to be nominated for these awards, and greatly appreciate RVA Tech in recognizing the technology community in which we have grown our start-up company. “This award ceremony celebrates the breakthroughs, advancements and outstanding technologists who are driving our technology-based economy.” We can’t wait to attend #GeekProm in May!

The Emerging Small Business award will be given to, “a local small business or start-up technology company that has demonstrated the ability to achieve commercial success.”
The Technology Builder award will be “awarded to a local technology company delivering technology solutions and/or services to external clients that build capacity and increase operational efficiency.”

 

For more information, view other finalists, and learn more about this event, visit the RVA Tech website.


young woman helping senior out of wheelchair and into back of vehicle

UZURV Partnership Provides Transportation for Special Needs Citizens

On August 1, 2017, in partnership with Greater Richmond Transit Company, UZURV began operating the Care-On-Demand program to serve transportation needs of citizens who are physically or mentally disabled.

Under the Americans With Disabilities Act, municipalities are required to offer transportation options to those who have physical or mental disabilities. Municipalities across the country struggle to meet the demand.   By tapping into the vast TNC resource to fill in the gaps UZURV is helping Richmond its neighbor, Henrico County, bring Smart Transportation options to those who need it the most

The program is available exclusively for individuals who are eligible under the American Disabilities Act. GRTC anticipates the current demand to be around 250 rides per day.

Here at UZURV we are all hands on deck! We’ve worked with the highest rated rideshare drivers to be certified to drive under the Americans with Disabilities Act. And we have partnered with Regional Para-transit suppliers to provide specialty service for non-ambulatory riders. We’ve also built a great team to manage Special Transportation.

How the Program Works

The CARE On-Demand program is for people who are unable to access public transportation because of a physical or mental disability and meet the requirements set by the ADA program. It gives them the option to make reservations for private transportation with a co-pay. Now they can call the UZURV call center, make a ride reservation, request specific amenities or special accommodations, and be picked up on time with curb-to-curb and even door-to-door service.

“It’s a game changer,” says Roderyck Bullock, a current CARE user. “As far as I’m concerned, they’ve hit it out of the park with this program.”

It’s a smart, safe solution and we are proud to have been chosen to provide this service. For more on the CARE On-Demand Program, check out GRTC’s website.


woman searching for rideshare on phone

8 Tips to Master the Pinging Process

Back in the day, before UZURV became its own rideshare platform with credentialed drivers for non-emergency medical transportation, UZURV used to be a reservation app for general rideshare.

The post below was one Uber and Lyft drivers consistently seemed to find helpful. So even though UZURV is now a different kind of rideshare business, we're keeping this post live in case you find it useful. And if you'd like to find out more about becoming a driver for a rideshare company where drivers get special credentials, earn more money per mile, and make a real difference in their communities, we hope you'll check out Drive UZURV to learn more.

So now without further ado, the UZURV Wayback Machine presents...

----------

8 Tips to Master the Pinging Process

One of the potential issue that both riders and drivers face is the pairing process when requesting a ride with a TNC (such as Uber or Lyft). Congested areas, peak times and connection problems are possible, but implementing these simple steps to connect the rider and driver will help ensure you are syncing with the correct person. After all, it is our main goal to bring riders and drivers together! Take a look below at some of the ways many experienced drivers that use UZURV have ensured a seamless process from UZURV to the TNC.

Tips to Master the Pinging Process

1. Make sure both your phone and the passenger’s phone are on data (LTE) not Wi-Fi.

2. Make sure GPS is on for both.

3. 4G LTE provides the best capabilities, a soft restart or airplane mode off and on may re-connect to LTE and give you the best signal.

4. In some circumstances it is good practice to ask to borrow the rider’s phone and make the ping for them.  In the rider app, make sure to have the destination entered or once the route shows touch on the starting point pin and place it directly on top of, or even better in front of your car.

5. Occasionally in very busy areas a good practice is to chat and ask rider about using the alternate TNC app beforehand (do they have both Uber and Lyft?). In some cities, Lyft is typically is less congested than Uber.  However, Lyft does have an algorithm for detecting fraud that can make pairing difficult. Pairing over and over with the same passenger may not work in certain time frames, as well as if the passenger tips you more than $10 on Lyft. If you have ever rated the rider a three star or below in the past, you will not be able to pair.

6. Morning and evening rush hour can make it difficult to connect as well as special events (Marathon, Concerts, Sports Games ending). UBER seems to queue riders if there are a large # of riders requesting at the same time. Example: 3 riders looking, Rider 1 will get UBER 2 and 3 will have to wait. The DESTINATION FILTER will help solve this problem.  If you put your destination filter to the Rider’s destination as you are going online, you will only be matched with passengers going the same direction (ie, your UZURV Rider.)

7. Because Uber & Lyft can anticipate that you’re driving forward while receiving requests, pings that are placed behind your car icon may often go to another driver even if they are closest to you.  This is due to mapping efficiency and ETA times (a driver would have to do a U-turn in traffic to retrieve a passenger behind them.  Best practice is to put the pin in front of your car not behind it to ensure you get the ping.

8. Remote areas not serviced require the rider to use an address or pin drop in an alternate covered area. Using the Chat Feature in the UZURV app will allow you communicate a mutual spot that is convenient for both rider and driver.

We hope these tips are helpful for your next UZURVation experience! Do you have any insider tips that you use? Happy driving!

-----

Fastforward to present... Learn more about the new UZURV -- the Adaptive TNC for paratransit and non-emergency medical transportation here!


man helping senior woman to car -- door to door service

What is UZURV, anyway?

Let’s see how some drivers and riders describe UZURV – and what the company means to them:

“Every single driver I’ve had with UZURV has gone the extra mile to make sure I’m comfortable and taken care of. ” – Keith S., UZURV Rider
“The riders have an amazing attitude and they’re gracious. And I do like the fact that I make a whole lot more per trip, per mile than I would on any other rideshare out there.” – Mickie R., UZURV Driver
“Gail.. she arrived absolutely on time and it was a great trip to the hospital. She was so kind and so friendly and a very very safe driver. I thank you so much for your wonderful driver." – Ms. Norman N., UZURV Rider
“When they see confirmation… 'UZURV'...they know they’re not going to be late. They know we’re going to be in a nice car that’s safe, and they’re going to have a courteous driver. They’re going to get to work, their therapies… whatever we’re taking them to — They can depend on us.” – Julie B., UZURV Driver
“I really like that the rides are scheduled. As a driver, that really helps me with my own personal schedule with my family.” – Jill S., UZURV Driver
“I like the passengers. I get to pick up the same people over and over again and so we get to develop actually a little friendship. And it feels safer. Because a lot of people know that trip is happening so I feel safer as a driver.” – Amber F., UZURV Driver
“I have so many great stories about the riders. They inspire me daily. ” – Rita B., UZURV Driver

We couldn’t have said it better ourselves! We invite you to learn more about a TNC that offers so much to both riders and drivers. What could UZURV mean to you?