Uber Wants to Take Over Public Transit, One Small Town at a Time

The Verge: “Uber has so far been pitching itself as a supplement to existing transit programs rather than a replacement. But in June of last year, for the company’s five-year anniversary, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick envisioned a future where increasing efficiency would make Uber cost-competitive not just with owning a car, but with traditional mass transit.”

“With the help of public subsidies, that future is coming fast. The speed with which Uber has entered the public transit sector has stunned industry activists. ‘It’s happening very quickly,’ says Lawrence Hanley, the international president of the Amalgamated Transit Union. “It’s like a tsunami.'”

“With or without the cooperation of public agencies, Uber is becoming a new transit provider for at least a segment of the population. For cities like New York with extensive transit systems, this could mean a new front in the Uber wars — or a new era of private-public collaboration in transit. Either way, the rise of ride-sharing will spell major changes in how the country’s largest transit systems move people.”

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