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Starting November 7, 2023, a new incentive system will promote carpooling in our region. The City of Lugano has decided to support the MixMyRide project and its users by covering the cost of sharing carpool trips. For every kilometer of carpooling made through MixMyRide, the City will offer the driver an incentive of LVGA 15 (CHF 0.15), allowing passengers to carpool for free. The new incentives will contribute to the reduction of traffic congestion and decarbonization of mobility, while supporting the local economy through the spread of LVGAs.
The Lugano Municipal Administration firmly renews its commitment to optimize urban mobility, in strict adherence to the ambitious directives set out in the 2018-2028 strategic plan. In particular, it actively promotes intermodal mobility as a highly beneficial option for both the city and the environment. This commitment has been embodied in the support, through Lugano Living Lab, of MixMyRide, a research project funded by the Federal Office of Energy launched at the end of 2021 under the leadership of SUPSI, together with the carpooling company BePooler and several partners in other cantons. MixMyRide has developed a smartphone app with which to plan and book intermodal trips combining public transport with carpooling and active mobility (walking and cycling), which is available free of charge in Ticino, Winterthur-Zurich and Geneva for a field trial.
In addition to supporting communication and actively seeking participants in the MixMyRide trial, the City of Lugano is now taking an important step forward with the new monetary incentive mechanism for carpooling. The incentives will be active from today, November 7, 2023, until the end of the MixMyRide trial, scheduled for February 29, 2024. They will be awarded to carpool drivers for passes included in the MixMyRide "Ticino" region, for a maximum of LVGA 15,000 (150 francs) per person during the trial period.
A total of LVGA 500,000 (5,000 francs) has been made available by Lugano City Hall. Mirko Baruffini, managing director of BePooler, would like to "express sincere gratitude to the Municipal Councillor Filippo Lombardi and the entire Lugano Executive for the decision to stimulate carpooling through MixMyRide. We are truly happy to launch this additional incentive geared toward promoting the use of the MixMyRide app, and we invite anyone interested to visit the project website (https://mixmyride.com/) to download the app and find details about the incentive."
The incentive will be disbursed in LVGA once a month, based on carpool usage data recorded in the previous month. "To be eligible for the incentive, MixMyRide users will need to have an account on the MyLugano app, the tool with which the City of Lugano manages all LVGA transactions. These are a real currency (100 LVGA = 1 franc), accepted in a circuit of more than 400 businesses in our territory. The complete and constantly updated list is available on the MyLugano website (https://my.lugano.ch/)," explains Joy Bordini, a collaborator with Lugano Living Lab.
The ongoing trial will estimate MixMyRide's impact on traffic and greenhouse gas emissions reduction to see if the approach is effective and whether it makes sense to extend it to other contexts. "The introduction of these incentives, in particular, will allow us to understand whether and how, for a monetary reward, citizens' attitudes toward carpooling and, more generally, multimodal mobility change. We are counting on citizens to acquire data with which to contribute to the research and simultaneously produce a tangible impact on our mobility," concludes Francesca Cellina, the SUPSI researcher coordinating the project.