Coming Soon: the Detroit Bus Company’s Newest Transit Innovations

2/20/13Follow @XconomyDET

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as well as funders lined up, but now he needs to find the public partner.

So what can we, the transit-starved public, do to speed this process along? Write emails to hello@thedetroitbus.com detailing how often we’d use the service, which Didorosi can then take to potential partners and funders to illustrate the public’s interest in an airport route. And here’s what we’d get in exchange, Didorosi says: a $10 bus ride to the airport equipped with Wi-Fi and power outlets for laptops and other devices, plus the ability to track the buses through an app.

In the meantime, as the Detroit Bus Company 2.0 gets rolling, Didorosi is offering a number of great tours, including Drunks of Antiquity, a tour of some of Detroit’s historic bars; Storm the Building, an architectural tour narrated by experts; a tour of churches; tours that incorporate the contents of books about Detroit, such as the excellent “Belle Isle to 8 Mile”; tours exploring Detroit’s history; and bar crawls.

Didorosi reworked the tours after he discovered that the average age of the Detroit Bus Company rider was 35 to 40 and that most of them lived outside the city and were interested in moving back, or they lived outside the city and had never spent any time in Detroit in the first place. He sees his bus service as more than just transit, but rather an ambassadorship on wheels introducing people to a city that is clawing its way back and offering some pretty cool things to do as it revitalizes. “This is how the seed starts,” Didorosi adds. “People get a look and start seeing themselves hanging out again at a bar, restaurant, etc. There are still a lot of structural issues in Detroit that might not work for you if you have a family, but for now, young professionals can move here quite easily.”

Sarah Schmid is the editor of Xconomy Detroit. You can reach her at 313-570-9823 or sschmid@xconomy.com. Follow @XconomyDET

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