March 1st, 2012

bswing

Jitney cabs: the future of public transport?

Originally published at craschworks. You can comment here or there.

For some reason, public transit activists aren’t very enthusiastic about jitney cabs. But it seems to me to be the ideal form of public transit.

  • Billions in additional subsidies not required
  • No eminent domain seizures for new rail lines
  • 24 hour operation
  • Uses existing roads
  • Flexible routes and schedules
  • No dependence on transit unions (which shut down city operations if they don’t get their way in labor negotiations)
  • Employs low-skill workers (retirees, new immigrants)
  • Wide range in service levels (from bare bones to luxury)
  • Low cost

End the taxi cab medallion monopoly, and a lot more people would step up to offer rides. Check out these links for more info:

http://www.mackinac.org/article.aspx?ID=2536
http://blogs.sfweekly.com/thesnitch/2010/06/cabbies_sue_to_halt_20_million.php
http://venturebeat.com/2010/10/26/ubercab-ryan-graves-cease-and-desit/
http://www.freepresshouston.com/featured/the-jitney-jinx-from-print-with-follow-up/
http://www.jstor.org/pss/724795