The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has completed a project installing standardized technology at 42 shared-ride transit providers statewide in order to improve efficiency and service for state residents who use the service.
The service scheduling and dispatch software, called Ecolane, helps providers improve on-time performance, collect data and maximize the number of trips provided. In 22 counties, the public can view available travel options as well as reserve or cancel shared-ride trips via website.
To further increase customer service, the partnership is rolling out interactive voice response technology which automatically calls riders the night before their service informing them of their scheduled trips, calls before the driver arrives at their location and allows cancellation through the system without having to call transit providers.
PennDOT will soon begin formal evaluations on effectiveness and cost savings associated with the technology.
Shared-ride service provides on-demand community transportation service and is available in all 67 counties. The Ecolane software is in use in all counties except Philadelphia and Allegheny, where the shared-ride service providers have their own software in use.