Pivot: Award-Winning Multi-Modal Trip Planning App

Smart Columbus’ mobility and navigation app Pivot has been recognized as one of the most innovative and influential smart projects of 2021 from the Smart 50 Awards in partnership with the Smart Cities Connect Foundation and US Ignite.

The Pivot app is one of the main innovations Smart Columbus has developed and introduced as part of its Multimodal Trip planning project funded by the $40 million Smart City Challenge Grant awarded to the city of Columbus by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Access Through Mobility

With this initiative, Smart Columbus was seeking to improve mobility and increase access to jobs, education and services for residents and employees in Columbus’ Linden and Easton neighborhoods to help them find, schedule and pay for transportation options including COTA bus service, ride-hailing, carpooling, bike and scooter sharing,  taxi services and personal vehicles.

The two neighborhoods were selected to reflect the diverse needs of the Columbus community.  The Linden neighborhood brought forward the socio-economic challenges impacting mobility including low household incomes, an absence of major employers, and lack of access to transportation.  Easton is a high-traffic retail and office destination just a few miles from Linden, and although it is a major employment center, the jobs in this area have high turnover rates.  A major contributor to this type of job instability is the lack of reliable transportation.

A Columbus Collaboration

Lextant worked to enhance user experience for the app in collaboration with Columbus-based Etch, LLC, that specializes in customized geospatial solutions that streamline mobility, . Our team conducted research with residents in both the Linden and Easton neighborhoods to understand the key drivers that would fuel adoption of the app and to define the ideal user experience for development.  We leveraged our deep experience in automotive, public transportation and mobility experiences as well as our model for creating consumer trust to develop a desired experience model and translate these insights into the sensory cues that would create it for users.

The Pivot App was initially introduced in August 2019 with trip planning features only.  In March 2021, the app was updated with new features including an app-to-app payment portal linking Pivot to partner mobility providers’ apps delivering a seamless user experience bringing together public and private transportation options together all in one place.

“Mobility is the great equalizer of the 21st century.  Smart Columbus continues to work hard to deliver long-range innovative projects that are critical to moving our city forward, today and in the future,”  Mayor Andrew J. Ginther, March 2021.

Smart Columbus is a joint initiative of the city and Columbus Partnership investing in mobility projects that make the region’s transportation system more efficient, safer, greener and better at connecting people with jobs – and to create solution playbooks other metro areas can follow.

Smart 50 Awards, in partnership with Smart Cities Connect, Smart Cities Connect Foundation, and US Ignite, annually recognize global smart cities projects, honoring the most innovative and influential work.

To learn more about Smart Columbus and the Pivot App visit smart.columbus.gov.

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