Liftango digitalising West Midland’s Ring & Ride
Liftango has won a competitive tender to implement its transport technology and digitalise the West Midlands’ Ring & Ride service, the largest demand responsive transport (DRT) service running in the UK.
Operated by National Express Accessible Transport (NEAT), the partnership is transforming Ring & Ride into a digital DRT solution that improves access to transportation throughout the region. The project is the largest full-scale DRT operation in the United Kingdom, with the potential to significantly expand the existing fleet of vehicles. Additionally, passenger trips will eclipse the current demand of 10,000 and are projected to reach over 20,000 per month.
The need arose for a DRT platform capable of extending the advance booking window while catering for more on-demand requests and same-day bookings. TfWM overcame this challenge by implementing Liftango’s DRT technology.
Liftango will initially provide short-term advance bookings as well as its routing and scheduling expertise packaged in a DRT operations platform, followed by the launch of a passenger app specifically tailored towards community transport and dial-a-ride passengers’ needs.
“We’re confident that digitalising our service will benefit thousands of local trips and ultimately make it easier and more sustainable for our citizens to travel” – Steve Hayes, Head of Network Transformation at TfWM
Steve Hayes, Head of Network Transformation at TfWM, aid: “We are delighted to be working with Liftango on our Ring & Ride transformation project as part of our ongoing commitment to providing safe, reliable, affordable and accessible transportation services in our region. We’re confident that digitalising our service will benefit thousands of local trips and ultimately make it easier and more sustainable for our citizens to travel.”
“The system is already providing evidence that it has the potential to help nurture passenger growth and assist the customer and operator experience develop” – Duane Henderson, National Express Accessible Transport Midlands Regional Head of Operations
Duane Henderson, National Express Accessible Transport Midlands Regional Head of Operations, said: “Liftango has provided a platform that assists in efficiently planning and scheduling services across seven areas in the West Midlands. The system is already providing evidence that it has the potential to help nurture passenger growth and assist the customer and operator experience develop.”
Liftango is contracted to carry out this project over a three-year period and are implementing over multiple phases:
- Phase One – Initial Launch, which began on 27 June 2022.
- Phase Two – Three Birmingham zones which began on 31 October 2022
- Phase Three – Four Black Country zones started on the 5 December, 2022
- Phase Four – Rollout of passenger scheduling application across the network in mid-2023