Uber Chicago General Manager Marco McCottry on June 17 responded to the City Council Committee’s advancing an ordinance that would take away transportation options and economic opportunities from Chicagoans. Uber already operates in Chicago under strict regulations that include criminal background checks for drivers, vehicle safety inspections, and other requirements.
The ordinance would make it nearly twice as expensive to get a ride by putting up costly, unnecessary barriers for ridesharing drivers. More than 100,000 Chicagoans have signed a petition against the ordinance, which would especially harm Chicago’s underserved neighborhoods. Forty-two percent of Uber’s trips in the City of Chicago start or end on the south and west sides.
“We love Chicago. But the ordinance that advanced today would eliminate ridesharing as we know it here,” said Uber GM Marco McCottry. “By constructing costly and complicated barriers for drivers that will prevent most from joining the platform, this proposal would take away affordable rides from Chicagoans. There is no need to harm one industry to help another. We continue to urge aldermen to reject this ordinance and instead modernize taxi’s rules to make life easier for their drivers.”
If the ordinance were to pass the full Council next week, it would hurt Chicagoans in every corner of the city. The City of Chicago has released data that shows Uber and Lyft are providing 10 times the number of rides to and from underserved neighborhoods as taxis over the last six months.
Here’s additional background on Uber’s service in underserved communities:
Uber serves neighborhoods that have long been underserved by taxis. According to City of Chicago data, ridesharing provided 92 percent of rides to and from underserved communities over the last six months while taxi only provided 8 percent. On the city’s south and west sides, the average ETA for an uberX ride is now under 5 minutes.
Uber creates new, flexible economic opportunities in communities that need it. In Chicago, 54 percent of active uberX driver-partners live on the south and west sides of Chicago, some of the city’s most unemployment-plagued communities.
Uber is investing in Chicago neighborhoods. Earlier this year, Uber opened up an office on the south side of Chicago. We’ve launched innovative programs to expand access to economic opportunity across the city, like this partnership with Father Michael Pfleger to launch a new, flexible, car leasing program.
Uber is making transportation more available and convenient for many communities. Unlike taxi, Uber offers a product – uberESPANOL – that allows Spanish-speaking Chicagoans to request a Spanish-speaking driver. As reported earlier this year, Uber will soon launch two new ride options to better serve people with disabilities, including an option for wheelchair accessible vehicles.