PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia’s taxi industry has been decimated by app-based, smart-phone friendly ride-sharing services, and one taxi fleet owner has proposed a low-tech idea to help them compete.
Taxi stands: the kind outside of 30th street, the Ritz Carlton and a dozen other places around Center City.
Freedom Taxi owner Everett Abitbol has proposed nearly 70 additional spots.
“We focused on areas that were growing, Northern Liberties, Fishtown, University City, especially, where it’s been typical to get a taxicab staged in anyone of those areas, but they’ve grown by twofold,” he said.
The Parking Authority likes the *theory.* But the head of the taxi and limousine division, Christine Kirlin, says a lot of variables are involved.
“Sufficient curb space, the traffic flow and width of the street, fire hydrants, placement of meters and residential parking,” she said.
Kirlin says there’d be more places to reliably find a cab, but it’s still not like summoning a driver to you.
She’s encouraging cabs to adopt an app called “Curbed,” which allows riders hail a cab and pay for it by phone, just like the competition.