City Pilots Fare-Free Microtransit Service, St. Louis, MO, 2022
5 minutes Date Launched: Mar 28, 2022 Pilot Project Timeframe: 9 months
Credit: St. Louis Public Radio
The City of St. Louis has launched the STL Downtown Link, a fare-free on-demand microtransit service. Customers can request point-to-point rides through the TripShot smartphone app or by calling a phone dispatching line in this service. Pick-ups and drop-offs must occur within about a 1.3 square-mile service area in the city’s downtown core. Labyrinth Smart Mobility, a local company, provides a fleet of two Polaris electric vehicles for this pilot and also employs the shuttle drivers. Both shuttles can fit up to six passengers at a time. Customers should expect to wait about 12 minutes for pick-up after requesting a ride in real-time. The STL Downtown Link operates from 9 AM to 2 PM and from 3 PM to 8 PM, Monday through Friday.
The City of St. Louis is funding this pilot with $240,000 from the American Rescue Plan Act. The STL Downtown Link is scheduled to operate until the end of 2022. With this pilot, policymakers can determine if microtransit is a practical solution for downtown St. Louis and how it affects mobility and commerce for residents, commuters, and tourists. When the pilot period concludes, it will be valuable to see if the STL Downtown Link expands its operating hours, service area, or fleet.