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App at Loyola to bring campus transit up to speed

Andrew Hudson   ||   Feb 03, 2016  ||   

Loyola University Chicago will launched an app for students, faculty and staff that is designed to improve the campus' existing transit experience. The app -- slated for launch this spring -- will accompany Loyola's 8-RIDE program and will enable students to call for a ride to any destination within the university's outlined boundaries.

According to a report from thew Loyola Phoenix, the university will have four to six vans in service every day, with the 8-RIDE program serving anywhere from 75 to 100 riders per night during the peak hours of 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. The 8-RIDE service will be provided by local transit company, MV Transportation, and will run seven days a week from 6:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. with extended hours on Friday and Saturday until 4 a.m.

To develop the app, campus transportation has been collecting data on how students use the 8-RIDE service. The app is expected to be available after Loyola's spring break.

The mobile app will require a one-time login with a student ID and will also include a shuttle bus tracker. 8-RIDE users will be able to request a ride, view the location of vehicles in service and monitor the time it will take for the ride to arrive.

8-RIDE has been in place since 2002, and in the early years the program was operated by Loyola. For the last decade, however, Loyola has outsourced the 8-RIDE program, and the results have been far more effective. The 8-RIDE service is available for current Loyola students, faculty and staff only. In order to use the service, a valid Loyola ID must be presented to the driver.

MV Transportation, meanwhile, is the second transit provider to contract with Loyola for the 8-RIDE program. MV Transportation has instituted a more efficient process for 8-RIDE services, including the collection more accurate ridership information and data to better hone services accordingly.

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