Today, Uber is launching a “Future View” in Metro Vancouver, greater Victoria, and Kelowna – a feature in the Uber app that offers a glimpse of what the future could look like if Uber were operating in BC.
This future is well within reach. That is why, on behalf of riders and drivers who want choice, we are asking the province to take action this spring to welcome ridesharing to BC.
British Columbians have made clear their overwhelming support for ushering in the benefits of the sharing economy; Almost 70% support the immediate introduction of ridesharing. It is time for the province to embrace the mantra as the party of yes when it comes to ridesharing.
Ridesharing is more than just a reliable and affordable ride at the tap of a button. It represents a more progressive British Columbia. With ridesharing, BC can:
- Empower people to earn extra income by driving their own car, on their own schedule
- Enhance safety and reduce drunk driving by increasing reliability of late-night transportation.
- Combat congestion and reduce emissions, by finally making widespread carpooling a reality with uberPOOL.
- Improve accessible transportation for the accessibility community and older adults with products like uberASSIST
- Expand the reach of the transit network by introducing affordable first/last mile options.
- Encourage entrepreneurs by sending a clear signal that innovations and new business models will not be overwhelmed by outdated regulations and vested interests.
The time for action is now, here’s why:
- People want more choice. In 2015, over 100,000 British Columbians and 125,000 tourists have opened the Uber app in BC looking for more transportation options, but finding none
- British Columbia is falling behind. Vancouver is the largest North American city without ridesharing, over 3 years after it was introduced in other top global cities.
- A consensus regulatory model exists for ridesharing is well-developed and implemented in over 70 jurisdictions globally;
- Consultations in BC have already taken place through the Vancouver Vehicle for Hire Roundtable last year. The issues are well-known, and have been discussed.
- There is broad support for provincial action. In fact 5 municipalities, including Vancouver and the Tricities, and the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade have asked the province to show leadership by creating ridesharing regulations
If the province opens up regulations to allow ridesharing, Uber and the ridesharing industry will commit to working in partnership to quickly launch ridesharing in BC’s major cities, improving transportation, and creating thousands of net new jobs in the province.
On behalf of all the future riders and drivers in the province, we encourage the provincial government to embrace the future and act on ridesharing this spring.
Ian Black, General Manager