City council is clamping down on TappCar. It’s a case of size matters. It hasn’t gone unnoticed by Mayor Don Iveson and others how big the letters are on the sides of the vehicles.
“I believe that particular provider has pushed their luck with respect to the vehicle badging and that the bylaw will have to be tightened up to put a stop to that,” Iveson told reporters.
Iveson said decals that big mean the perception is out there that you could hail a ride from the side of the road.
“That was not what council had in mind with the bylaw and therefore I do think those provisions around the badging need to be revisited and strengthened.”
Pascal Ryffel, a spokesman for TappCar said they’re phasing out the large letters to something smaller. They went that route with the launch in March to attract attention, and because they wanted the perception of public safety.
“We are looking at basically having a compromise size, that is not as large as the original TappCar decals, but it’s still large enough that passengers can see it easily because we believe it is a safety issue.”
“We had never even considered that our competition or city councillors would be complaining about it,” he said in an interview. “Of course now that we know it’s something that causes concerns for some people, particularly taxi brokers we are willing to re-examine that.”
Changes in city council’s bylaw is expected later this fall the Mayor said. “There’s a tension between you need to be able to identify that it’s a PTP vehicle so that you know you’re getting into the right car from a patron customer safety point of view but on the flip side you don’t want to be so big it leads to either street hailing or the perception of street hailing and clearly the incumbent PTP has crossed the line on that.”
New regulations from the province also will now kick in after cabinet ratified them Tuesday. It’s expected that will open the door to Uber rejoining the market on Friday.