A recent report released by the Vancouver Board of Trade has revealed that the Vancouver area has the lowest taxies per capita of any major Canadian city, which is why the board has asked the province to clear the way for Uber and other ridesharing services, Vancouver Metro is reporting. The report also highlights that Vancouver has some of the highest taxi fares in the region and is also the largest metropolitan area in North America that doesn’t allow ridesharing services like Uber to operate.
The board has said that the taxi industry’s stranglehold on licenses has stifled competition and left the region underserved. “High fare prices, poor customer service and long wait times have led to the growing public demand for new passenger transportation alternatives,” the report reads. “Greater Vancouver is in desperate need of new and innovating passenger transportation options.”
The report adds that municipal governments in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody and Langley Township have also expressed support for ridesharing in their communities.
The Board of Trade has made a number of recommendations, least of which is for the provincial government to impose a regulatory framework that allows for commercial ridesharing in British Columbia. It also wants taxi regulations to be updated so the industry can compete with rideshare providers, ICBC to create insurance options suitable for part-time and flexible vehicle-for-hire work and for municipal bylaws to be harmonized with any provincial framework that is developed.
In October last year, the City of Vancouver voted in opposition to ridesharing but urged the province to look into the issue.