ATLANTA –MARTA, in partnership with Georgia Tech, announced an expansion of MARTA Reach, a six-month pilot rideshare service designed to connect riders to-and-from MARTA bus and rail. The pilot, meant to test how on-demand shuttles can be used to make it easier and faster for customers to get to their destinations using MARTA, will be expanded to include the neighborhoods of Dixie Hills, Avondale Estates, and the cities of Alpharetta, Roswell, Forest Park, and Morrow.
“We have seen significant interest and loyalty from the early riders of MARTA Reach,” said MARTA Chief Customer Experience Officer Rhonda Allen. “Most of our riders take many trips a day, connecting to grocery stores, schools and day care, social activities, and the broader MARTA system. We’re thrilled at the opportunity to expand the program to serve more riders in more parts of our region for the second half of the pilot.”
Starting May 16:
- The current West Atlanta zone will be expanded to include Dixie Hills, alongside the Florida Heights and Collier Heights neighborhoods. New connections will be made to West Lake and Bankhead Stations.
- The current Belvedere zone will be expanded to include the neighborhood of Avondale Estates. New connections will be made to Kensington Station.
Starting May 30:
- The current West Atlanta zone will expand into the cities of Forest Park and Morrow, including new connections to Route 196, Clayton State University, Southern Regional Hospital, and Southlake Mall.
- A new zone will be introduced in North Fulton, including Georgia State University’s Alpharetta Campus, Downtown Alpharetta, and the Avalon District. Connections will be provided to Routes 85, 140, 141, 142 via the Mansell Park & Ride.
“The North Fulton CID is excited to welcome the MARTA Reach Pilot Program to North Fulton,” said Executive Director Brandon Beach, “This program has proven its effectiveness in other areas of Metro Atlanta and we look forward to our members, businesses, and residents receiving the benefits of the program.”
Professor Pascal Van Hentenryck and Georgia Tech’s Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) team is providing the technology, including routing logic, and rider, operator, and administrator system apps for the project.
“We are really thrilled about this expansion that will give MARTA Reach an opportunity to provide first- and last-mile connectivity to more riders, expanding a growing and loyal customer base,” said Van Hentenryck. “It will also allow us to improve our understanding of the sweet spots for MARTA Reach, and where it best complements the existing MARTA network. The first months of the pilot have been incredibly exciting, and the expansion will build on the great progress MARTA Reach has already accomplished.”
To order a ride, download the MARTA Reach app from your smartphone’s mobile app store. The app will guide you to designated pick-up and drop-off stops near the beginning or end of your trip. If there’s not a stop where you’d like, you can request additional stop locations in the app. Riders who do not have a smartphone can call MARTA Customer Service at 404-848-5000 to request a ride. All MARTA Reach vehicles are wheelchair and stroller accessible.
MARTA Reach debuted on March 1 in West Atlanta, Belvedere, and the Gillem Logistics Center and costs the same as a MARTA fare, $2.50. The service runs from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and is a ridesharing service, meaning other passengers may be picked up and dropped off during a trip.