With about 86 buses and one garage, Alexandria Transit, commonly known as DASH, represents a growing community of smaller agencies who have realized that investment in technology is critical to sustainability. And, like most other transit agencies, what stands between DASH and their desire for the most advanced ITS solutions is a lack of funding.
What sets DASH apart from some of their peers, however, is their phased approach to technology procurement. “Technology is something that really isn’t an option anymore. It’s necessary to be a quality business, to be sustainable,” said Josh Baker, CEO and General Manager of Alexandria Transit (DASH). Using this phased methodology, Dash has managed to position their fleet for the future to ensure the sustainability of their agency. “Our ability to implement on a phased level is important. As a small organization, we just don’t have a lot of extra money to work with. It’s not like we can write a check for a million and a half dollars and get everything all at once. It just doesn’t work that way for us,” Baker added.
In the past few years, DASH has migrated their fleet from older, outdated technology to all new IVN’s. With this foundation in place, they have been able to gradually procure and deploy CleverCAD, BusTime, CleverWorks, Clever Reports, APC’s and Ridecheck Plus and most recently, SmartYard.
“We are expanding our capabilities gradually and the platform that we’ve got allows us to do that much faster and more easily than if we would have to go out procure from a new vendor for every single piece of the pie”, said Tristan Cunningham, Senior Planner and Scheduler, Alexandria Transit. “IVN is sort of your one-stop gateway to control all of these solutions,” he added.
“When we’ve integrated Clever into our practices we were able to do things not only more efficiently, but more comprehensively,” said Martin Barna, Alexandria’s Director of Planning.
The slow but steady procurement of technology is helping DASH secure the future for their agency ensuring that public transportation remains a convenient, affordable and enjoyable option for the people of Alexandria, Virginia.