Lyft has formally submitted its paperwork to begin operating in Rochester
The ride-sharing company Lyft has formally applied for and been granted a license to begin operating in Rochester.
Doing so makes Lyft the first ride-sharing company to submit paperwork since the city adopted a new ordinance permitting transportation network companies.
The license request will go before the city council on Feb. 22. However, Lyft can start offering service anytime, according to Assistant City Administrator Aaron Reeves.
We reached out to the company to find out when they might begin operations here. In a statement Lyft spokesperson Mary Caroline Pruitt said, "We've been exploring driver interest in the area, but have no plans to share at this time. We look forward to continuing our rapid growth across the country, and are optimistic that we’ll be able to bring Lyft to Rochester soon."
Though smaller in size, Lyft is Uber's top competitor in the fast-growing ride-sharing industry. Launched in 2012, Lyft now operates in more than 200 U.S. cities, including both Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Uber, meantime, has yet to apply for a permit with the city.
Representatives from the company had aggressively lobbied the city to adopt new regulations and were involved in drafting the language of the new ordinance.
An Uber spokesperson told us last month that it was focused on "kickstarting the operational process required to get Uber up and running in Rochester." That includes "reaching out and encouraging Rochester residents to sign up and drive, as well as working closely with the city on implementation of the ordinance."
Uber has not set a timeline to begin offering service.