DES MOINES – After a successful pilot program for DART on Demand, Des Moines’ public transportation service is bringing the program to two other metro communities.

DART on Demand is a mobile pick-up service that riders can use to have a bus come directly to them and take them where they need to go, similar to ridesharing apps like Uber or Lyft. However, DART on Demand will only pick up and drop off riders in a designated service zone.

DART has plans to expand the program to the Riverbend Neighborhood on the north side of Des Moines as well as West Des Moines.

Luis Montoya, the Chief Planning Officer at DART, said that in the case of West Des Moines, the focus of the service is to transport people to the DMACC campus and the growing area around it.

“That area is growing a lot you’ve probably seen that there’s a waterpark and hotels and restaurants and the Recplex was built, all this stuff is going on down there and so our strategy is to fulfill the existing need which is DMACC and then as those other things come along we can grow the transit capability with it,” Montoya said.

The other area in the metro where DART on Demand will be available is the Riverbend Neighborhood on the north side of Des Moines. Riverbend has the lowest median household income in DART’s service area and when surveyed the residents said transportation access needed improvement.

DART expects the program to help the residents of the Riverbend Neighborhood climb out of poverty.

Montoya said that the cost of the bus fare will be the same as normal bus routes.

“The way our customers use all of our services is as a network and if somebody gets on a regular fixed route bus and gets off and then gets on a DART on Demand vehicle we want them to be able to use the same bus pass and not an upcharge,” Montoya said.

To learn more about DART on Demand visit DART’s website.