Another ridesharing company has expanded to include service in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows. (Lyft/Special to The News) Lyft expands to include the entire Metro Vancouver region. (Lyft/Special to The News)

Mayors welcome rideshare expansion to eastern Lower Mainland

As of Thursday, Lyft is now offering service throughout Metro Vancouver

Another ridesharing company has moved further east into Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and new sections of Langley today.

On Thursday, July 9, Lyft announced the expansion of service, claiming to hear from both riders and drivers that there’s a “significant appetite” for the service not only in these communities, but also in eastern Langley, the Belcarra area, Lions Bay, and Bowen Island.

Pitt Meadows Mayor Bill Dingwall and Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden both said they’re keen to see the additional transportation option available for local residents.

“Pitt Meadows residents have been eagerly awaiting ridesharing in our community, and I’m pleased to say that day has come with Lyft now launching here,” Dingwall said.

“Ridesharing helps to reduce impaired driving by providing a safe and convenient way home. It is also yet another transportation option for residents to travel and a welcomed service to our city,” added the retired Mountie turned mayor.

As B.C. continues to re-open amid COVID, Metro Vancouverites are more inclined to explore the area again, believes Ted Lee of Tourism Vancouver.

RELATED: Uber to apply for ride-hailing licence in B.C., will operate in Lower Mainland

And that’s been substantiated, Lyft’s B.C. general manager Peter Lukomskyj.

Since the beginning of Phase 2, he said the company has seen rides to restaurants and bars increase by more than 500 per cent and trips to public transport and ferry terminals double, indicating people are looking to move around the region, Lukomskyj said.

“At Lyft, we’re thrilled to become the first rideshare company to serve all of Metro Vancouver. While we’re all staying closer to home this summer, we have an opportunity to really explore what our region has to offer. We’re looking forward to being a reliable, responsible, and convenient way for all Metro Vancouverites to move around our beautiful backyard,” he added.

“It’s great to see another transportation option for our citizens being launched today,” Morden said.

“Our council has been committed to ensuring that rideshare companies are able to operate with the collaborative regional approach to licensing. Congratulations to Lyft for this exciting announcement.”

Riders and drivers must self-certify that they will wear face masks throughout the ride, are symptom-free, and will follow health officials’ guidance related to COVID-19.

For more information, including inquiries about becoming a driver, people can also visit the Lyft website.

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• If there is more to this issue, please let us know about it. Email us at editor@mapleridgenews.com. We look forward to hearing from you. In the meantime, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

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