Citywide Accessible Dispatch Rules Pass Unanimously


December 08, 2016

The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) today unanimously approved proposed rules creating an operational framework for the expansion of its Accessible Dispatch Program to dispatch Yellow Medallion and Green Cabs to passengers in all five boroughs. The successful program is currently only able to serve passengers requesting rides from Manhattan to any destination in the five boroughs. A public hearing on the proposed rules was held in November.

Today’s popular Accessible Dispatch Program began in 2012, with less than 240 wheelchair-accessible vehicles on the road. There are now more than 1,200 wheelchair-accessible medallion taxis moving the riding public, an increase of over 350% since the program’s inception, and almost 600 wheelchair accessible green cabs on the road.

The landmark of 1,000 accessible taxicabs on the road was achieved this fall, and played a key role in making the City more accessible to all. The Accessible Dispatch Program is also on pace for more than 60,000 completed trips in 2016, with passenger wait times averaging less than 12 minutes.

“Today’s vote was the culmination of tremendous effort, but it is really only the beginning,” said TLC Chair Meera Joshi. “We are anxious to continue the process of bringing this safe, convenient service of matching passengers with yellow and green cabs to New Yorkers and visitors alike, and hopeful that the creation of this never-before-available option will make a positive difference in people’s lives, as the current program has for so many.”

“A citywide wheelchair accessible taxi dispatch program, one that could provide all passengers with a physical disability with safe and appropriate services at no extra charge, is a much-needed amenity in our city,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. “I commend The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission for developing a framework for such a system that can insure better transportation for people with disabilities throughout the five boroughs.”

“As a person with multiple sclerosis who uses a wheelchair, it is near impossible for me to get to Manhattan or around the boroughs spontaneously without the option of an accessible taxi service. Those living in Manhattan have access to this service, and until the program expands citywide, those in the boroughs do not,” said filmmaker Jason Da Silva. “The only options available for me now to get into Manhattan spontaneously would be to take a ferry and several buses. I’ll be able to now have spontaneity, run my business more efficiently, socialize a lot more, and live like everyone else does. One of the reasons people move to New York City is the spontaneity of the everyday cab.”

We anticipate the service being available to users beginning in the spring of 2017. Prospective users will not need to reserve ahead of time and may “hail” a wheelchair-accessible yellow medallion taxicab by calling 311, the dispatch center, texting a request, or using the Accessible Dispatch smartphone app.


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