Getting Around Downtown
Connecting Places and People
As part of the City of Sarasota’s Strategic Initiatives, the city’s objective is to expand the range of transportation options to support transit-orient development and a robust multi-modal network. This network would accommodate pedestrians, bicyclists, ride-share and on-demand service and facilities, public transport and water transportation. The Parking Division is currently working on several fronts to advance this initiative and offer a new level of connectivity for the community. Making it easier for visitors to find parking, and then ride or walk to their favorite places makes visiting in Sarasota easy and smart.
- · The City is launching a “free” ride service, called i-Ride, to connect people with places in downtown.
· Water taxi permits are now being accepted for services on the Sarasota Bay to connect residents of the keys and neighboring cities with the Downtown waterfront in Sarasota.
Beginning March 24, i-Ride, by Gotcha, an eco-friendly connector of six passenger electric vehicles will begin operations by piloting a test program over the next two years. Services will be free to riders and offer point to point transportation within certain boundaries of the downtown area (see map below). The service is scheduled from 11 a.m. through 11 p.m. daily.
i-Ride vehicles can be hailed using the new i-Ride app (more details to follow), or by simply hailing a vehicle down as you see it drive by on the streets. Rides are free but drivers earn tips for their service.
Taxis, Transportation Network Operators (Uber/Lyft), and other providers
With the advent of the latest technologies for transportation, the lifted the restricted ordinances on taxis and transportation network companies. This new approach made it easier for such companies to provide services throughout the region while they serve the City of Sarasota. Since the City no longer regulates these services we caution riders from accepting service from drivers that appear to be less than reputable or substantiated businesses.
The city is exploring bike share programs that will improve mobility options around town. As more news develops, we hope to bring exciting news about how to locate parking, biking, and the bring the best ideas in biking to our beautiful community.
The city is identifying locations that would be most successful using a shared vehicle concept, like those available for hourly rental. Your feedback on this type of service and its benefit to our community would be very well received. Stay tuned for more information about this valuable option in community accessibility.
Transportation - Getting around downtown
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