MELINDA

Mobility Ecosystem for Low-carbon and INnovative moDal shift in the Alps

“RIDEHAILING IN URBAN AND RURAL AREAS OF SWITZERLAND”

Start-up description of the pilot project idea

Public transport in urban and rural areas is under pressure to provide cost-efficient and attractive services. Amidst these challenges, transport companies and new ride-hailing companies provide on-demand ride services (so called “ride-hailing”) from virtual stations that are as far as possible integrated into current public transport networks. This new mobility business model is expected to improve accessibility in urban and rural areas and to lower the car ownership rate.

The first pilot project from the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts investigates the possibilities of ride-hailing to improve public transport networks in urban (Ostermundigen – Stettlen) and in rural areas (Herzogenbuchsee-Niederönz). It also aims to compare the different ride-hailing business models adopted by various transport companies. Together with the analysis of socio-demographic characteristics of the population in the research area and the ride-hailing customers, the project contributes to identify success factors of ride-hailing business models.

The local pilots more precisely are the areas or municipalities:

Herzogenbuchsee - Niederönz: Herzogenbuchsee is a municipality with around 7’000 inhabitants. The ridehailing service will reach to the adjoining municipality of Niederönz with 1’600 inhabitants. Both municipalities are considered as rural areas, with some central functions. They are both located in the canton of Bern.

Ostermundigen - Stettlen: Ostermundigen is home to 17'000, Stettlen to 3'000 inhabitants. They are both urban areas, being part of the agglomeration of the city of Bern.

Pilot project challenges

Main challenges of the pilot project are:

  • Lack of viable mobility solutions in rural areas due to the high costs of public transport services,
  • High rate of private car use in the pilot region.

A potential solution to be tested through the implementation or improvement of ride-hailing services.

Main and specific objectives of the pilot project

  • We will test the viability of ride-hailing services’ proposed business models in the pilot areas.
  • Analysis of the significant factors influencing a successful ride-hailing service in different spatial settings


Pilot project target groups

The end users interested by pilot project are members of the general population living in the pilot  urban and rural areas. The aim is to reach the broadest part of population possible in order to reduce car-dependency among them. What is relevant is to understand individual attitudes and beliefs able to drive towards a broader use of the ride-hailing services. The main connector to the end-users is the service provider (Kronawitter Innovation).