Lyft to launch ride-hailing in Lower Mainland before end of year

B.C. government has set Sept. 3 as date that ride-hailing companies can apply to enter market

A Lyft ride-share car waits at a stoplight in Sacramento, Calif. on July 9, 2019. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Rich Pedroncelli)

Ride-hailing company Lyft says it plans to be operating in Vancouver before the end of this year.

The Passenger Transportation Board in B.C. has yet to unveil its final ride-hailing regulations, but a statement from Lyft says the company is confident its operations will begin in the Lower Mainland sometime this fall.

The B.C. Transportation Ministry has set Sept. 3 as the date ride-hailing companies can apply to enter the market, while rules covering fares and the number of vehicles permitted for each ride-booking service are expected by the end of the summer.

Peter Lukomskyj has been named as Lyft’s first general manager in B.C., and says the company hopes to expand throughout the province, especially into areas where additional transportation options are most needed.

But he says, given the number of Class 4 commercially-licensed drivers required to sustain the ride-hailing network, the company’s immediate focus is the Lower Mainland.

Lukomskyj says Lyft remains concerned there may not be enough drivers with commercial licences to allow it to expand beyond the region.

Lyft’s plans for ride-hailing services outside Vancouver are expected to be announced closer to its Lower Mainland launch.

RELATED: B.C. to allow Uber-style ride hailing services to operate in late 2019

“We are still quite concerned about the requirement for drivers to have commercial licences as it will negatively impact driver supply and restrict the regions in which we are able to operate,” Lukomskyj says in an emailed statement.

Class 4 licence holders include taxi, limousine and ambulance drivers. They must be at least 19 years old with a minimum of two years of non-learner experience and fewer than four penalty points over the preceding two years.

Numerous organizations in B.C., including the craft brewers guild, epilepsy society and the province’s gaming and restaurant associations have called for ride-hailing.

Lyft already operates in Ottawa and the Greater Toronto Area between Hamilton and Oshawa.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

Feds announce $8.3M to deal with ‘ghost’ fishing gear in B.C. waters

Three projects on the North Coast awarded funding

VIA Rail lays off 1,000 unionized workers across the country

Northern B.C. route Jasper to Prince George to Prince Rupert is not affected by VIA Rail layoffs

Hagensborg Water District purchases new fire truck; prepares for conversion to CCRD

Approximately $1.3 million of the district’s infrastructure grant has been transferred to the CCRD.

‘It’s really frustrating’: B.C. Indigenous groups share impact of border closures

The closures have resulted in disputes between Indigenous groups and local businesses

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Washington’s NFL team drops ‘Redskins’ name after 87 years

The franchise was given the name back in 1933, when it was still in Boston

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

Sports fishers protest Fraser River Chinook closures

Public Fishery Alliance wants hatchery fish open for harvest

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Most Read