A new area-wide on-demand transport service will be launched in Nordrhein-Westfalen: G-Mobil (short for: Gronau-Mobil) will replace the local city bus from June 1, 2021 and will form a user-friendly, innovative and sustainable alternative. In the future, four barrier-free e-vehicles will drive here on demand, which means independent of schedules and frequency. This allows passengers to move flexibly between 130 stops.
Residents and visitors to Gronau will be taken to their destinations by electric London Taxis and E-Vitos every day of the year, Monday to Friday between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m., Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and on Sundays and public holidays from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.. The booking is made via ioki’s smartphone app. Thanks to the intelligent algorithm of the ioki platform, passengers can be bundled into a carpool, according to their destination and travel time. This ensures optimal vehicle utilization and sustainable mobility in Gronau.
«Good mobility is a location factor and quality of life – especially outside the major metropolitan areas. The on-demand project in Gronau and Epe makes mobility better, safer and cleaner. Converting the city bus service to a digital and completely demand-driven mobility service is a consistent and courageous step that the state is very happy to sup-port. «G-Mobil» is a great project for successful, dynamic and future-oriented public transport in Gronau,» said Hendrik Wüst, Transport Minister of Nordrhein-Westfalen.
At the start of the project, passengers can test the G-Mobil free of charge for one month alongside the existing city buses and cab buses. After that, the city buses will be completely replaced by the G-Mobil, which is integrated into the tariff and can be conveniently ordered via smartphone app. Passengers can thus book their trip up to seven days in advance at no extra charge to the bus service. The G-Mobil vehicles have wheelchair ramps for barrier-free boarding and electric drive technology for maximum CO2 savings.
«The G-Mobil project marks a change in Gronau’s city bus service from a fixed-schedule system to an on-demand system – in other words, a flexible and demand-driven system. With this innovative and easy-to-use service, we want to offer the people of Gronau and Epe fast mobility, and I am delighted that we were able to inaugurate the first vehicles – our G-Mobiles – today. These not only look smart, but are also climate-friendly, spacious and barrier-free. Therefore, I would like to cordially invite all interested parties to use the on-demand transport and wish everyone a pleasant and safe journey!» said Rainer Doetkotte, Mayor of the City of Gronau.
The service area in Gronau covers the Euregio in the west to the Ter-Meulen-Weg in the east and from the Drilandsee in the north to the P+R parking lot on the B54 in the south. The existing stops are taken over and supplemented by 51 virtual stops. This will result in a higher density of stops and thus for shorter distances for citizens.
«New mobility offerings become a success when they integrate seamlessly into existing forms of transport and are planned in a customer-centric way – the bold step of flexibilizing and digitizing the city bus by the G-Mobil project of the city of Gronau is a prime example of this. Our on-demand platform fits organically into the cityscape and covers the actual mobility needs of the citizens» says Dr. Michael Barillère-Scholz, CEO of ioki.
The public transport authority in Gronau is the district of Borken, while the project partners and operators of the G-Mobile are Regionalverkehr Münsterland GmbH (RVM) and the planning office plan:mobil. The project is organized by the city administration of Gronau, with support in implementation from the district of Borken. The G-Mobil is also being funded as part of the Mobil.NRW model project for innovative public transport in rural areas.