Home Albemarle County, Charlottesville Area Transit launch on-demand rideshare service

Albemarle County, Charlottesville Area Transit launch on-demand rideshare service

Crystal Graham
microcat rideshare albemarle
Submitted photo

Albemarle County and Charlottesville Area Transit have launched MicroCAT, an on-demand transit rideshare service that provides transportation to residents of Albemarle County.

The service started today and functions as an extension of CAT’s existing fixed-route bus lines.

MicroCAT provides a transit option that matches multiple passengers traveling in the same direction into one shared minivan to solve “transit deserts” or areas where fixed routes cannot efficiently be reached.

The service operates in two areas – Pantops and Route 29 North – both identified as areas of high need for increased mobility access in a 2022 transit study.

The pilot program will operate fare free. The service will operate Monday to Saturday from 6:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The software system is similar to Uber or Lyft, but the fleet operates more like rideshare or carpooling services.

The fleet consists of MicroCAT-branded vehicles. Wheelchair-accessible vehicles will be available upon request.

Riders must be 13 years of age or older. Children under the age of 13 can ride when accompanied by a parent or guardian. Car seats are not supplied, but riders traveling with children who require them may bring their own.

How to request a ride

  1. Create an account.
  2. Download the MicroCAT app from your preferred app store and follow the simple signup steps.
  3. Book a ride.
  4. Enter your pickup and drop off address. Choose the ride that works for you by tapping Book This Ride.
  5. Meet your driver.
  6. Check the app to see your designated pickup point. It may be a short walk away, but it helps to cut down on detours and make your journey faster.

More information

A service area map is available on MicroCAT’s webpage.

A smart phone is not required. A trip request can be made to (434) 442-2466.

Related story

Microtransit option to launch in fall for on-demand rides in Pantops, 29 North
Published date: August 28, 2023 | 3:24 pm

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.