Bus drivers and riders have been waiting for more than two years for a new transit system that would take them into Manhattan, where they’d often miss work on buses or subway cars.
A $1 billion plan for transit in New York City has been in the works for nearly two decades, but it’s now being delayed by a lawsuit from a bus company that is challenging the city’s decision to allow ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Lyft to operate in the city.
Uber’s lawsuit says the MTA and the Department of Transportation have not adequately explained how the new service would operate, and that it’s unclear whether ride-sharing apps will be required to register with the city and comply with all the requirements of a “transit-first” policy.
In response, the MTA said it is working with the Department to review the proposed new rules, and would respond to the lawsuit once it’s done.
Here’s what we know about the proposed rules and how they might impact you.
Who are Uber and how do they work?
Uber is a ride-service company that operates in more than 40 countries.
It started out in San Francisco in 2012 and has grown to over 200 cities and more than $200 billion in revenue since.
Lyft, meanwhile, is an app that connects drivers with riders, providing a cheaper and more reliable way to get from point A to point B. It’s similar to Uber in that it connects riders with drivers, but drivers have to go through a background check, as does every rider who uses it.
Both companies have different models for offering their services in different parts of the city, with Lyft focusing more on its San Francisco hub, while Uber focuses on the more sprawling parts of New York and Los Angeles.
The companies say they aim to reduce traffic congestion, but a study by the transportation research firm TASC found that Uber has the most negative impact on the city by far.
Who is Uber and what does it do?
Uber’s drivers and passengers are usually paid an hourly rate, usually $7 or $8.
Uber drivers also have to sign a non-disclosure agreement with the company and agree not to share any information about the ride with anyone.
Uber also doesn’t want drivers to reveal their personal information.
The company is owned by private equity firm Blackstone Group, which is currently under scrutiny for potentially engaging in a $45 billion Ponzi scheme.
Uber is also accused of failing to meet safety standards, and drivers who are injured or killed while riding with Uber have faced lawsuits.
Lyft’s drivers are paid a base rate of $15 an hour, which can vary depending on location and the driver’s experience.
Drivers are also required to sign confidentiality agreements, though the company has not explained those to passengers.
What’s the difference between Uber and other ride-share services?
Uber offers several models, including: UberPool, a carpooling service that allows riders to pay a fixed monthly fee to each other in exchange for taking a ride with a driver, and a free ride for a ride to and from work.
UberPool also allows riders who don’t have a ride share service to share rides with other people.
UberX, which allows riders and drivers to pay to park a car and then pick up passengers.
Uber doesn’t offer its own taxi service.
Lyft offers its own private-hire cab service.
Uber and its competitor, LyftX, have also teamed up to create Lyft Cabs, which provide rides for a fee and pick up riders for a fixed amount of time.
Lyft says it’s partnering with the NYPD and other government agencies to provide the vehicles and other services to support the new system.
What are the rules for ride-shares?
Uber and the other companies say the new ridesharing rules will make it easier for drivers to earn an income and increase demand for their service.
The new rules also require drivers to undergo background checks and get city-approved licenses.
The rules are designed to ensure the safety of all drivers and for passengers who use ride-and-share companies, and to make it possible for ride share companies to offer their services.
Uber, Lyft, and the others say they are not the subject of the lawsuit, but that the city needs to explain its plans for how the service will work.