Sudbury

Need a ride? Ridesharing service, Uride coming to Sudbury

A new ridesharing service is getting ready to expand into Sudbury. Uride is an app that first started in Thunder Bay, the hometown of company founder Cody Ruberto.

Company currently hiring drivers, expects to be operating by the end of October

The Thunder Bay-based ridesharing service called Uride hopes to expand into Sudbury. Founder Cody Ruberto says the company is working to meet the city's taxi-bylaw requirements. (Uride Facebook)

A new ridesharing service is getting ready to expand into Sudbury.

Uride is an app that first started in Thunder Bay, the hometown of company founder Cody Ruberto.

The service focuses on mid-size and smaller markets, where there are fewer transportation options.

"I have a lot of friends and family members who just would be left stranded outside bars, sometimes in minus 30 degrees Celsius, and there would be very few options to get home. So it's something that I really want to solve," Ruberto said.

Cody Ruberto said he launched Uride because his friends and family members kept finding themselves without a ride at the end of a night out. (Heather Kitching/CBC)

Like other similar platforms, users can download the app and request a ride from anywhere in the city 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All payments are made through the app.

Almost as soon as the company launched in Thunder Bay, Ruberto says people from Sudbury began reaching out wondering when the service was expanding to this city.

"It's been on our roadmap for a long time."

He adds that Sudbury has similar problems to Thunder Bay, in that individuals needing a ride on a cold, winter night were left waiting too long for a taxi.

Ruberto says the average wait time for a Uride driver in Thunder Bay is ten minutes.

"In Sudbury we're going to do our absolute best to ensure low wait times."

Ridesharing falls under taxi bylaw

In Sudbury, ridesharing services are included under the city's taxi bylaw, which was amended in 2016 in response to interest from companies like Uber.

Ruberto says Uride has been working to meet the requirements of the bylaw.

"To ensure that every person is safe and qualified to be on our platform. Our drivers, they all need city licenses, so they all have to be approved by the city before actually driving on the Uride platform," he said.

The company is in the process of hiring drivers, and plans to have the service up and running by the end of October.

Uride isn't the first ridesharing app to court Sudbury.

Uber and an Ottawa-based company called oRide have both looked at expanding to the city in the past.

With files from Robin De Angelis