With New York City traffic congestion at the center of the headlines in recent days, Lyft has launched a new ride sharing service that the company claims will help combat the perpetual gridlock.

“Shared Saver is a real step in helping NYC further address traffic and congestion by promoting shared rides through the City’s congestion zones,” said Ann Ferracane, general manager, Lyft New York & New Jersey.

The new service, Shared Saver, asks riders to walk a few blocks from their current location to ensure the most efficient route, minimizing the amount of time spent circling the blocks for Lyft drivers.

In return, riders will see significantly lower fares than on other Lyft ride share options. However, drivers will continue to earn the same amount with Shared Saver as they would with standard Lyft trips.

“By ensuring rides are more dependably affordable, we’re also able to better serve New Yorkers on a fixed income or living in the transit deserts of the outer boroughs, creating a fairer transit system overall. We’re proud to be able to do all this while maintaining driver earning levels,” said Ferracane.

Lyft’s goal is to promote more shared rides throughout the city, reducing the total number of vehicles, subsequently reducing overall traffic.

In addition to reducing overall traffic, shared rides are also subject to a lower congestion fee — 75 cents compared to $2.75 — resulting in lower fares.

The Shared Saver program initially launched in San Jose and Denver in February, with New York City serving as the company’s first major expansion of the service.

~source