At the beginning of this year, Transdev started in several regions with OV-op-Maat as a solution for empty public transport buses and the rising costs of social assistance transport. In order to achieve a broad-covering network and to roll out the service at a high level everywhere, the company has concluded an agreement with De Vier Gewesten (DVG).

OV-op-Maat was created to keep small centers and villages accessible, without leaving public transport buses running around empty. Instead, vehicles that are already being used for target group transport in the region will be connected to public transport. “We do not use a stand-alone fleet for this transport service, but use vehicles that are already moving more efficiently,” said Transport on Demand director Lucien Brouwers. Travelers can book a ride from certain stops to a transfer stop or to a junction via a specially developed app or by telephone.

A pilot is currently underway with public transport op-Maat in parts of the municipalities of Aalsmeer and Amstelveen and one in Hoeksche Waard/Goeree Overflakkee. According to Brouwers, this is going well and is generating interest from many other provinces and municipalities. “In areas where we are responsible for both target group transport and public transport, the service can be easily implemented. Where this is not the case, discussions are held with the carriers about, among other things, the interpretation and quality of the service provided”, explains Brouwers.

Quality everywhere at the same level The collaboration with DVG makes this easier. “As a franchise organization, DVG has a large network of affiliated taxi companies, spread across the country.” An example of an area where cooperation is already useful is in Noord-Holland. There is interest in OV-op-Maat here, but Transdev does not have its own concession for target group transport. “Thanks to the new collaboration, DVG has the ‘first supplier’ right here. This means that they are the first to be approached to fill this in for us with a franchisee.”

Instead of negotiating with a lot of separate parties and having conversations every time concerning the quality requirements of transport, one-off agreements have now been made with DVG. “All their franchisees who are going to carry out OV-op-Maat follow this line. As a result, the quality is at the same high level everywhere,” says Brouwers. The contract with the individual carriers is, however, attuned to the area. “The service will not be exactly the same everywhere. For example, in one area people will drive from stop to stop and in other areas they will not, and prices will differ.”

DVG fits the bill For DVG, the collaboration is a great opportunity to expand the activities and contribute to efficient transport. “Providing customized transport is tailor-made for us”, says director Wim Brouwer. “Thanks to our national network, in collaboration with Transdev, we can also offer tailor-made public transport to travelers and thus build a bridge between public transport and target group transport”.

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