Kootenai County Public Transportation was awarded an FTA Integrated Mobility Innovation (IMI) grant–announced on March 16, 2020. The county which serves the county in northern Idaho that includes its seat Coeur d’Alene, is one of the fastest growing in the country, largely due to its popularity as a retirement destination. The transit system serves large rural areas and a large population of lower income and senior riders who might not have access to technology and who might be fully dependent on wheelchair accessible transportation.
According to the budget summary,
The proposed Kootenai Regional Mobility Platform will be built using the Passio Intelligent Transportation System, which includes Navigator™ for fixed route management, ParaPlan™ for demand response, Connect™ for on demand and GO™ for rider-facing apps on major mobile platforms. Using GO, riders will be able to make informed mobility choices using a dynamic trip planner that is optimized based on the rider’s preferences and history. Using open data standards, GO will incorporate public and private transportation providers, giving access to mixed modes such as walking and bike-shares. Total time and cost of the trip will be highly visible to the rider and will be displayed intuitively in the app. This comprehensive trip planner will give the rider a high level of confidence in their transportation decisions. The Platform will enable public and private partners to establish service fares and collect payments when the trip is booked or with a clearinghouse. The Platform will also allow for pass-through authentication allowing the rider to link existing accounts. Riders will be able to download the app free on iOS and Android devices. The rider will then set up a personal profile for transportation service including accessibility preferences and payment options.
The Mobility Platform will be rolled out in three phases. The first Phase will define the data standard that will manage the available transportation options, service times, geographic service area and associated costs. The IMI project includes new interfaces for partners and management tools for Kootenai County. The data will feed the trip planner in GO, providing informed transportation choices. Phase II will extend the data standard, allowing for booking and confirmation of rides in GO. Phase III will include payments, allowing for a full single app experience of booking, confirming and paying for a trip, regardless of transportation provider.
The Executive Summary states that the Mobility Platform will accomplish these goals through tasks including:
- Leveraging our existing Intelligent Transportation System to design a Mobility on Demand (MOD) and Mobility Payment Integration (MPI) options;
- Creating a “single touchpoint” application that connects users to multi-modal transportation options; and
- Integrating single payment for complete journeys, linking multiple mobility accounts under a common single transit account, and use of multi-modal planning tools to determine a user’s journey.
The Mobility Platform’s intended impacts are:
- Increased customer participation in transportation services
- Integration with multi-modal options (bike-share, et al)
- Integration with transportation providers
- Tying fare payment to trip planning
- Account-based fare collection
The revised scope of work, original announcement, and the documents linked above are also attached below.
This post was written as part of the FTA Integrated Mobility Innovation (IMI) grant.