Google, Facebook Begin Paying to Make Stops at San Francisco Bus Stations

Google, Facebook Begin Paying to Make Stops at San Francisco Bus Stations

Google, Facebook and other Silicon Valley companies have started paying to make stops at San Francisco bus stations. The decision might have come after protests were lodged whereby these companies were blamed for gentrification.

For past many years, private buses take tech workers from San Francisco to their offices in Silicon Valley. But in past few months, certain groups have alleged that the private buses that cater to big companies have increased the rents in the low-income neighborhoods.

They have also criticized that the buses come in the way of municipal buses. From Friday, a pilot programme to run for 18 months has been started. Under this programme, the shuttle services can use the bus stops at more than 100 locations across the city. In exchange, they would require to pay at least $3.55 each time they pick or drop passengers.

But it seems that this programme has not been able to calm the protestors. On Friday, around two dozen demonstrators gathered in the Mission District and they expressed their anger at the buses.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) said there are 35,000 daily trips made on the shuttles. Through the new pilot programme, $3.7 million will be raised, which will be used to ensure that the service runs smoothly.

"We're grateful to the SFMTA for taking the lead on the pilot and look forward to working with the city and participating shuttle operators to refine the programme", affirmed a Google spokesman.

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