The Passenger Transportation Board has approved the first ride hailing application in the province.
The board has given the green light to Green Coast Ventures Inc. to operate ride-hailing services in the Lower Mainland, in the Sea to Sky area as well as on Vancouver Island, excluding the Capital Regional District.
The company’s ride hailing app will be called Whistle and will focus on resort towns, where the struggle for transit during peak times is the greatest, the company said.
Green Coast Ventures Inc will now secure appropriate motor vehicle insurance and work with municipalities to ensure compliance with local by-laws for Whistle.
During its first year, Green Coast said it will focus on Tofino and Ucluelet and on Whistler, Pemberton and Squamish, operating 15 and 30 vehicles respectively in those areas.
Expansion plans will then continue on small towns such as Courtenay and Parksville and Qualicum to assist with the growing senior population.
Green Coast expects to have some future presence in the Lower Mainland but mainly expects to respond to the transportation demands of the smaller communities so that return trips are possible, from Whistler to Vancouver, for example.
Meanwhile, the board has declined to approve the application of another company, LTG Technologies Ltd.,to operate in Capital Regional District, Vancouver Island, and Okanagan-Kootenays-Boundary-Cariboo.
“The decisions were made after a careful review of the extensive materials received during the application process which included the supporting information provided by the applicants and submissions from interested members of the public, which included information from experts, the board said.
A total 24 ride hailing applications have been received, and the board is reviewing the other applications.