Community Transit’s first on-demand service is set to launch Oct. 20 with the Lynnwood pilot project. Its area includes Alderwood mall and goes north to 164th Street SW and south to 204th Street SW. Fares cost $2.50. (Community Transit)

Community Transit’s first on-demand service is set to launch Oct. 20 with the Lynnwood pilot project. Its area includes Alderwood mall and goes north to 164th Street SW and south to 204th Street SW. Fares cost $2.50. (Community Transit)

Community Transit’s on-demand rides in Lynnwood start Oct. 20

The service, called Zip, will run for one year in an area near Alderwood mall. Fares cost the same as a bus ride.

LYNNWOOD — Get hip to the Zip.

Community Transit’s first foray into on-demand rides starts Oct. 20.

Zip service encompasses the Alderwood mall, Lynnwood Transit Center and Swamp Creek Park and Ride. Its area generally is bound by Highway 525 and I-5 to the east, 164th Street SW to the north, 204th Street SW to the south, and Highway 99 to the west.

Similar to other ride hailing services such as Lyft and Uber, people can use a smartphone app to request a Zip ride. Riders can also request a pickup through a phone call. The specific app and phone number were not yet available.

“Our goal with Zip is to introduce an innovative new transit service that provides an easy way to get around locally for the price of a bus ride,” Community Transit CEO Ric Ilgenfritz said in a news release. “We look forward to hearing feedback as we consider additional pilot projects in the county.”

Fares will cost $2.50, the same as a local bus trip. People can pay with cash, credit and debit cards, or an ORCA card. ORCA users can transfer or make a return trip with a two-hour window without paying again.

Zip shuttles are accessible for people with disabilities, and drivers are trained accordingly.

Riders 18 and younger can board free.

Its schedule is 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. But it won’t have scheduled stops, which means wait times depend on use. Passengers could see waits between 10 and 15 minutes, according to Community Transit. At least two shuttles will run, with four if necessary.

Private transit company MedStar Transportation will operate the Lynnwood project for one year on a contract worth just over $1 million.

Community Transit is using the pilot to evaluate the potential for broader on-demand service in other areas. The idea is to help people better link with other transit, including buses and the upcoming light rail stations, so they don’t have to drive themselves.

The agency is looking at other tailored services in Arlington, Darrington and Lake Stevens.

Ben Watanabe:425-339-3037;; Twitter: @benwatanabe.

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