Los Angeles Rethinks Taxis as Uber and Lyft Dominate the Streets
Pricing was not the one issue. In 10 % of the taxi journeys in Ms. Brown’s examine, the motive force traveled twice as many miles as crucial, including $5 to the journey’s value.
Interviewing the scholars afterward, Ms. Brown stated: “They felt the unreliability of taxis didn’t finish once they bought within the automotive. They didn’t know the way a lot the journey can be. There wasn’t at all times a recourse in the event that they have been unhappy with the motive force. Uber and Lyft, they may complain and get their a refund.”
It’s these points that Los Angeles is attempting to handle with its new taxi allow system.
Taxis have tried to innovate, Ms. Brown stated. Many cab firms have developed their very own apps, however they work just for that particular person fleet, and that fleet may not function within the space the place a buyer wants a trip. Whereas a minimum of one app developer has tried to deliver all of the cabs’ apps below the identical tent to allow them to function in a way extra like Uber or Lyft, that app doesn’t work properly, she stated.
And that raises the query: If Uber and Lyft provide superior service at a greater worth, and if taxis’ makes an attempt to emulate ride-hail applied sciences aren’t working, why not simply let the taxi system fail?
“Taxis are this legacy service,” stated Ms. Brown, now an assistant professor on the College of Oregon. “They’re a extremely necessary mode for therefore many vacationers.”
Ms. Brown stated taxis have been used most frequently by the town’s lowest-income folks, who pay with money.
Taxis serve one other function, in line with Mr. Murray, of the town’s Transportation Division. As a part of the Individuals with Disabilities Act, the Federal Transit Administration requires cities to supply complementary paratransit service to folks with sure disabilities. The Los Angeles Transportation Division saves cash by subcontracting 65 % of these rides to its taxi firms, he stated.