By David Winterstein, Co-Founder and CEO
and Eldredge Bermingham, Head of Strategic Partnerships, Velocia, Inc
Getting where you want to go in your community within reasonable time is key to a productive, enjoyable life. Connectivity impacts the economic expansion of most communities; here in South Florida, two Mayors — one former and one serving — challenged Salim Ismail, the founding Executive Director of Singularity University to consider new options to better connect the citizens of Miami-Dade to work, to school and to one another. Salim was asked to explore new mobility opportunities that might work synergistically with the many on-going efforts and resources in place that are helping to improve connectivity across Miami-Dade. With strong support from the Knight Foundation, Codina Partners, MDX and the Office of Mayor Carlos Giménez, Salim and the Fastrack Institute established a 16-week competition to develop new private enterprises with the sole aim of encouraging our citizens to get out of their single-occupant vehicles — at least sometimes. The Fastrack teams recognized that providing solutions in Miami required shorter-term, human-centered business solutions coupled to the longer-term, infrastructure-rich SMART Plan. Imagine the disruptive strength of Lyft, Uber, Airbnb focused on providing solutions to how we get around our county and cities and you have the Fastrack solution, Velocia.
Velocia is a free mobile phone app that rewards people for getting out of single-occupant vehicles. Velocia has partnered with both the Public and Private sectors to create a mobility ecosystem that spans all forms of mobility. The app rewards you for riding Metrobus and Metrorail, hopping on a Citi Bike or e-scooting that first mile/last mile on a Bolt scooter. We have big rewards for sharing your car on Getaround or forsaking car ownership altogether and using a shared-Getaround vehicle for those trips when you just have to have a car. We will be experimenting with sweepstakes rewards from SwiftSeat to crack the carpooling nut, especially for university students across Miami-Dade. Velocia rewards you for walking to promote good living and provide a healthy alternative to the first mile/last mile mobility dilemma. Just by pairing your existing mobility apps on the Velocia platform you can help Miami solve mobility issues, reduce carbon emissions, save some money and just have more fun getting around our cities and county.
Velocia is generous. We understand the potential positive impact incentives and rewards can have on our community. Therefore, we have made it easy for users to earn and redeem on the platform. Today, you can see campaigns such as: walk 10 miles and earn enough VELOS to redeem for a $5 Lyft credit or Download the Getaround app and Velocia rewards you enough VELOS for $10 off your next trip with Uber or on a JUMP e-scooter. Velocia rewards you with VELOS every time you board Metrobus or Metrorail, with bonus VELOS for riding Metrorail to the airport or carpooling to the North Dadeland Park & Ride.
Velocia has global aspirations for delivering new mobility solutions that begin here in Miami! Miamians are diverse, energetic and entrepreneurial and provide a rich fabric for learning the ins-and-outs of mobility reward economics. The community and its political leaders have been extraordinarily supportive and with your help Velocia will provide a positive return to Miami for its investment, innovation and confidence.
If Velocia encourages each of you to spend one day less a week in a single-occupant vehicle with Rewards that Move You, then you begin participating in a virtuous cycle of decreasing congestion and decreasing carbon emissions, while increasing savings and more healthy living. As leaders in the Miami Business Community, we are asking you to help spread the word about Velocia. Your reach spans across organizations, employees, communities and much more. We are looking for 2000 users to help us test the app, earn and redeem rewards and provide feedback to make Velocia the best it can be for Miami.
Velocia is available both on iPhone and Android phones. Please download the app from the Velocia website at www.velocia.io and invite your colleagues and employees to do the same. Please get in touch with fellow Miamian Eldredge Bermingham (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions or comments about Velocia.