The first Qwik Ride shuttles took to the streets of Huntington village Saturday night in an effort to relieve congestion in public parking lots.
The free app-based shuttle service features two, six-person electric golf carts that will be used to pick up riders from outside of town and bring them into more crowded areas of the village during peak evening hours.
Qwik Ride, which recently started offering similar service in congested Patchogue village, is designed to free up parking in the heart of Huntington village by getting employees’ of village businesses to park their cars in outlier locations like the Town Hall parking lot or the municipal lot adjacent to Rite Aid at the western end of the village.
“The goal is to move employees to distant parking. When there are less people circling for spaces in the village, there’s no gridlock,” Qwik Ride co-founder Dan Cantelmo said in June.
He added that the business has had success in Patchogue.
“People want it. There’s a need for it, and the best part, it’s free.”
Qwik Ride’s business model relies on advertising. The Paramount, Huntington Chaber of Commerce and the Huntington Village Business Improvement District have already attached their brands to the first two carts in town.
Qwik Ride plans to expand the hours of the service in the coming weeks to include both daytime and evening shuttles.
An official ribbon cutting for the service is planned for late next week.