The Transactional Data Specification: A Building Block for Equitable Mobility-as-a-Service

The Transactional Data Specification: A Building Block for Equitable Mobility-as-a-Service

A simple, but integral technological advancement holds the promise of creating a stronger, more equitable transportation system. In the fall of 2019, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Transportation Research Board took a small but meaningful step towards addressing access inequality when it published the transactional data specification (TDS) for demand-responsive transportation (DRT). This seemingly mundane step is vital to facilitating the integration of human services transportation with emerging Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) platforms—where all the ways one can travel about the community become available at the click of a button on one’s smartphone. But this new world of mobility, where ridehailing businesses like Uber grow in popularity, threatens to be inaccessible to a large swath of people who currently depend on paratransit buses unless MaaS developers embrace a common format for data sharing. (MORE)

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