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Free 'Test Rides' Win Transit Riders

The "Test Rides" program in Sweden is showing success in getting people to drive less and take transit more.
October 22, 2019, 5am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"If you live in Gothenburg, Sweden, a city in the southwest of the country with a population of about 570,000, and drive to work or school, the regional transit agency wants to give you a two-week free pass to use on buses, ferries, and trams," reports Adele Peters.

The city says the program to deter driving is working. "Since 2010, the agency, called Västtrafik, has launched nearly 30 of the 'test ride' campaigns in western Sweden," explains Peters. "In an ad campaign this fall [shown above], the Sweden-based creative agency Forsman & Bodenfors assembled 30,000 toy cars to help residents visualize the impact of the campaign—which offered 30,000 free passes—on local traffic."

More insight into the program's success is available in the source article. Planetizen blogger Todd Litman visited Gothenburg in 2015, and wrote about the city's early adoption of congestion pricing as tool for incentivizing alternative modes of transportation.

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Published on Friday, October 18, 2019 in Fast Company
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