By Southwester Staff

On October 20, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, the Southwest Business Improvement District (Southwest BID) and community leaders launched DC’s first-ever Mobility Innovation District. 

According to the Mayor’s office, the multi-year mobility project, funded by a $3 million city grant to the Southwest BID, aims to “improve equitable access to transportation for residents and visitors in Southwest and create a global innovation hub to show how mobility innovation can make a city more equitable, sustainable, safe, and prosperous.” 

The first new transportation option the initiative will bring to the neighborhood is the arrival of 

Circuit, a micro-transit company that offers all-electric, on-demand transportation in nearly 30 cities in California, Florida, Texas, New York and elsewhere. Residents can hail Circuit’s electric vehicle like they would other ride-sharing options and receive on-demand rides within the boundary of Independence Avenue to the north; 15th Street SW and waterfront to the west; Q Street SW to the south; and South Capitol Street to the east – with the extension into Capitol Riverfront/near Southeast service area from M to New Jersey Ave SE to I Street SW.

At the launch event, the Southwest BID also announced new Requests for Proposals for projects focused on Universal Basic Mobility (UBM) and electrification. The UBM pilot will provide residents with a transportation stipend that they can use on a wide range of public and privately operated transportation options. According to the Mayor’s office, the project will “provide insight into what future modes of transportation are needed to serve residents who currently face a barrier to employment due to lack of transportation.” The electrification project will work to advance the adoption of electric vehicles, scooters and bicycles by adding electric vehicle charging infrastructure in public places where it does not currently exist. 

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