The Hoot Rides downtown shuttle service began on Oct. 15. Courtesy photo
Cities Community Community News Oceanside Region

Oceanside explores electric transport

OCEANSIDE — The city of Oceanside is partnering with Hoot Rides, a neighborhood electric vehicle (NEV) ride-hailing service, for a pilot program that will provide an easy, environmentally friendly way to move around the downtown section of the city.

Starting Oct. 15, Oceanside residents and visitors can begin using the Hoot Rides shuttle service in downtown Oceanside, including along the beach, pier, and harbor areas. To hail the NEV, passengers need to download the mobile app for iOS or Android devices at hootrides.com, and can select a shared ride for $3 per seat or book the entire vehicle. The pilot program will run for six weeks and operate Wednesdays through Sundays from 3 to 11 p.m. each day.

A mobility service like Hoot Rides connects to the nearby Oceanside Transit Center to provide access to mass transit options – Coaster, Sprinter and Breeze bus services. Whether a family wants to get between the beach and harbor area easily, a visitor is taking transit to the city and needs to get to their hotel, or someone is dining in downtown, this service can provide people with more options that are electric, supporting the city’s Climate Action Plan.

“A service like Hoot Rides is a natural fit for the beachside city of Oceanside and supports our goals to decrease single-rider vehicles, as well as providing access to alternative, clean modes of transportation,” said Kiel Koger, Public Works director for Oceanside. “We are excited to support this pilot program and want to encourage everyone – both residents and visitors – to hail a ride and try this mobility service that is fun, and new for our community.”

Hoot Rides will work closely with the city and the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) to provide insights around the pilot, including analyzing level of demand for this type of mobility service, how to best connect visitors from existing transportation to popular destinations, and which overall geographic area will find this service most useful. Oceanside restaurants, hotels, and retail businesses are also teaming up with Hoot Rides to promote this pilot service to their customers. SANDAG is a strategic advisor for this pilot program.

“This program is a perfect example of how the SANDAG 5 Big Moves can work together to enhance connectivity, increase sustainability, and improve quality of life in the San Diego region,” said SANDAG Executive Director, Hasan Ikhrata. “This service will make it easy for people to secure a ride on a flexible fleet to help them get to major destinations around Oceanside.”

If this pilot program is successful, Oceanside will look for opportunities to make this a permanent transportation option for the community. For more information about Hoot Rides and to download the app, visit hootrides.com.

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