City, Uber Strike Deal That Avoids Cap on For-Hire Vehicle Growth

A deal has been struck between New York City and the ride-hailing company Uber.

Under the agreement, which was announced Wednesday, City Hall will study Uber's impact on congestion in the five boroughs for four months.

Uber has promised to share more data with City Hall, and they will also start discussions with the administration on how to address supporting the MTA and disability passenger rights.

There will not be a cap on Uber's growth during the study. The administration wanted a 1 percent cap during a year-long study. Uber opposed any cap.

First Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris says as part of the deal, Uber will "maintain its approximate rate of growth and not flood the streets with new licenses and vehicles."

Shorris says in addition to the study, a larger review of the entire taxi, for-hire vehicle and livery industries will take place. According to Shorris, that review will take focus on "revenue for public transit, consumer protections, driver and employee protections, and accessibility for people with disabilities."

The deal was struck a day before a City Council vote that would have imposed the limit.

City officials say a cap could still be imposed if Uber reneges on the deal.

"Taken together, these elements represent a smart and fair way to address the issues posed by the FHV industry in New York," Shorris said, in part, in a statement. "The City's goals and obligations are clear – protect the public, encourage growth and innovation, and keep New York City moving. This framework enables the City to accomplish each of these critical responsibilities."

In a statement, Uber general manager Josh Mohrer said, in part, "We are pleased new drivers will continue to be free to join the for-hire industry and partner with Uber. Together, we can build an even better, more reliable transportation system. This is great news for all New Yorkers, including Uber riders and drivers."

In a phone call that aired live on NY1 Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo praised the solution when asked about it.

"The issue is much more complex than it was initially presented. I believe it could have statewide implications. The congestion as the rationale, but when you think about it, Josh, all you would have done is push the Uber franchises to the surrounding suburbs in Jersey, and they would have then driven into Manhattan to drop off their fare," Cuomo said.

"Well, they can't pick up anyone. Who cares? They come in, they drop off, they came over the bridge, they came through the tunnel. That's congestion."

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