ViaVan, a joint venture between on-demand shared transit specialists Via and Mercedes-Benz Vans, is launching its shared ride service in Milton Keynes.
The service uses Via’s algorithm to route Mercedes-Benz Vito Tourers, allowing passengers to book a shared van through the ViaVan app.
It is the fourth city ViaVan has been launched in, following Amsterdam and London earlier this year and its partnership with Berlin’s public transit authority, BerlinerVerkehrsbetriebe (BVG).
Chris Snyder, CEO of ViaVan, said: “Milton Keynes is an innovation-forward city and we’re delighted to launch this ground-breaking on-demand service, providing residents with a convenient, affordable, and congestion-reducing dynamic transportation alternative.”
He added: “Over the next few years, we’re increasingly going to see cities and towns asking how they can provide their residents with transportation that provides the same ease and convenience as private car ownership, and yet still achieves the same environmental and congestion-reducing benefits mass transit.
“ViaVan is the solution, a platform that integrates with existing transit infrastructure and enables residents to seamlessly travel within the greater London-Milton Keynes area.”
Steve Hayes, head of transport at MK Council, added: “Milton Keynes is a great place for transport initiatives with its fast moving grid roads, unique Redway network and a history of trialling new technologies like the driverless pods.
“MK Council is very proactive towards transport innovation and working in partnership with innovative, commercial companies so ViaVan fits in perfectly with our aims to offer a wide range of travel options to everyone.
“Sharing journeys is something we fully support as one of our key objectives is to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce traffic growth so that MK remains easy and quick to travel around as it continues to grow rapidly.”