When Leap Transit rolled into San Francisco in 2013, its plan to hack overcrowded public buses by offering a lux, app-powered private alternative was met with immediate fury.From those entitled to rule;
San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos called the startup a “crock of s—” that creates “a two-tiered transportation system in San Francisco.” With buses outfitted with reclaimed wood and Wi-Fi, and serving Blue Bottle Coffee, the details read like an overwrought satire of San Francisco’s seething class tensions.Between those stuck idling in traffic and those reading online?
An editorial on the tech news site ZDNet declared that the company “symbolizes everything that is wrong with the current bubble and boom of Internet startup culture.”Much worse;
And in true startup fashion, Leap didn’t even have a permit.Who do they think they are, Henry Ford?
Leap is among a growing class of private shuttles in San Francisco including Chariot (“the first-ever crowdsourced transit”) and Loup (“Uber for buses”). The idea is to cater to commuters who are willing to pay a premium to avoid the unpleasantries of public transit, but are too cheap to take Uber.Oh, maybe the Dodge brothers.