Bytemark collaborated with the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), King County Metro and rewards partner Velocia to release Transit GO rewards, a mobility rewards and incentive program embedded within the regional fare payment app Transit GO Ticket.
The program will allow users to sign-up to earn points for various actions and subsequently redeem those points for rides on King County Metro buses, water taxis, Sound Transit, Seattle Streetcar and all local scooter and bike share companies, including Lime, LINK, Spin and Wheels.
To support the Seattle Department of Transportation’s “Flip Your Trip” campaign, designed to encourage people to replace car trips with other travel options such as transit, vanpooling, biking, scooting or staying local, Transit GO Rewards will initially be available to West Seattle residents who have been impacted by the closure of the West Seattle High-Ride Bridge. Anyone who lives or works in the West Seattle area is eligible to take the #FlipYourTrip pledge and receive an initial sign-up bonus to use for free rides on the transportation mode of their choice through the Transit GO Ticket app.
The West Seattle High-Rise Bridge, which formerly supported more than 100,000 trips per day, was closed in March 2020 after city engineers discovered rapidly growing cracks in multiple locations. It is on track to reopen mid-2022, after stabilization and repair of the bridge. The bridge closure has affected travel to and from the West Seattle peninsula, including Duwamish Valley communities, where detour routes have increased traffic and pollution from people driving.
“The West Seattle Bridge closure has had a significant effect on everyone living and working in West Seattle and Duwamish Valley neighborhoods, especially people who have dealt with increased traffic and speeding through their neighborhoods” said Stefan Winkler, SDOT West Seattle Bridge Travel Options manager. "Our partnership with King County Metro, Bytemark and Velocia is an important part of our approach to help people discover more sustainable ways to get around and support long-term changes in travel patterns.”
King County Metro plans to offer expanded access to Transit GO Rewards in the future, allowing more people to ride, earn and redeem. Transit GO Ticket, originally launched by Bytemark for King County Metro in 2016, is built on the Bytemark Bridge Plan, Book and Pay platform. It allows transit riders to plan a trip, then purchase tickets and passes for a number of transit options, including the King County Metro Bus, Sound Transit, the Seattle Streetcar and the King County Water Taxi.
Providing the opportunity to redeem points for shared mobility options, including transit, effectively creates a mobility credit exchange, giving users the flexibility to select the mobility option that is right for them.
“As we see traffic return following the pandemic shutdowns, it is more important than ever to seek new ways of getting people out of their cars. We view Transit GO Rewards as the perfect catalyst for accelerating adoption of Mobility-as-a-Service, as it generates awareness of the shared mobility options and reduces the economic barriers to changing customer behavior” said Brian Thompson, director, business development, Bytemark, Inc.