To say that our friends at Lyft had a “busy and productive end of the month” would likely be an understatement.
While the greater Bay Area was busy Kaepernicking last week, the phone app associated with the pink-moustachioed cars achieved two milestones.
Not only have they made progress in coming to terms with the California Public Utilities Commission, but they have also expanded their reach into new territory with the launch of their mobile app down in Southern California.
The growing popularity of the on-demand service hit a speed bump back in September when the CPUC hit Zimride’s Lyft and other local rideshare companies with hefty $20,000 fines and cease-and-desist letters for not complying with safety rules.
Lyft co-founder John Zimmer explained back in October that the company was more than willing to work with the CPUC to not only prove that Lyft is a safe and affordable service, but that it was possible to maintain the service within the Public Utilities Commission’s parameters:
“We believe that the CPUC has an important job of consumer protection. That’s really important. And because we realize that what we’re doing doesn’t fall within the current regulations because this is a new innovation, we made sure that what we were doing goes beyond any consumer protection that other transportation providers are required to have at a city level.”
“This agreement supports the continued legal operation of Lyft and sets a precedent for the upcoming rule-making process.”
The announcement, in the form of a letter from Zimmer and co-founder Logan Green, goes on to thank faithful Lyft riders for their continued support and efforts to help keep the company afloat:
“You are our community’s pioneers who make this vision possible, and we thank you for supporting the movement.”
Also in late January, Lyft launched its service down in the Los Angeles area, complete with an “inaugural Mustache Parade” to commemorate the milestone.
The launch of LA Lyft started with Santa Monica, Venice and West Los Angeles. The blog explains that a further extension into East Hollywood “and beyond” should be underway within the next few weeks.
Zimmer updated SFBay a week into the company’s service in Southern California:
“After our first week we’ve seen great demand for Lyft in LA, and starting today have now expanded our service area to serve the entire greater LA area. We’re thrilled to bring this more social, affordable and efficient transportation alternative to LA residents for the first time.”