May Mobility: The Future of Transportation in Ann Arbor

What is May Mobility?

May Mobility is the self-described “Future of Mobility.” Offering a transportation cross-breed between a self-driving Uber/Lyft and the convenience with service and cost-effectiveness of your local bus system

May Mobility is an Ann Arbor-created public transit service. 

According to Rob Carter, customer operations manager, the company’s goal is to offer different communities the deployment and use of autonomous vehicles while providing a safe alternative option for public transportation.  

“We always wanted to have a service in our own backyard,” Carter said. “We recognize that there were different public transportation gaps in the area. For example, in Ann Arbor, there’s no way for someone to ride public transportation to get to and from the Amtrak station. So that gap is something that we aim to solve by joining that public transportation community.”

May Mobility are fleets of green and white cars/vans traveling throughout Ann Arbor. The vehicles use advanced technology to provide self-driving technology to the Ann Arbor public transportation market. This is possible through a program they have labeled their Multi-Policy Decision Making (MPDM) system to help make their vehicles safer, sustainable-friendly, and accessible.

“(MPDM) is proprietary to mobility,” Carter said. “It’s a way to run 1000s of simulations based on anything that possibly could happen, and the vehicle making the safest decision based on those options.”

According to Carter, while the car is self-driving, each vehicle will include an operator who will educate users on the technology and the workings of the operating system. 

The service is free, and the transportation company, since its creation in 2017, is experiencing a steady increase in users. 

According to Brittany Lockard, external communications manager for May Mobility, the service averages about 1,000 riders per month in Ann Arbor.

“The services are funded from the outset by a mix of public and private partners,” Lockard said. “That’s so the service can be free for our riders.” 

While being located here in Ann Arbor, the company is gradually expanding its services and having locations in Grand Rapids, Minn.; Arlington, Texas; and Sun City, Ariz.

“We believe autonomous vehicles have the opportunity to transform cities and reduce the need for personal car ownership,” Lockard said. “To do that, we primarily operate as part of the public transit infrastructure, with a focus on filling existing gaps — be it time of day, locations served, etc. Riders can use an app to book a ride similar to other ride-hail companies, or they can use a local call-in number if they don’t have or prefer not to use a cell phone.”

With experienced human safety operators to ensure a smooth and secure transportation experience, their vehicles operate in predefined areas, such as short-distance trips, to ensure a safe ride for their passengers.

How to use May Mobility services

For those looking to use the service, you have to download the May Mobility app, located on all app stores. 

Users can schedule the service 2-8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

According to Lockard, the goal for May Mobility in the coming months is to improve transportation between different areas in the Ann Arbor area. 

“We’re committed to improving transportation,” Lockard said. “[We] believe May Mobility would be a good fit to bridge transportation gaps in many communities. We have multiple new deployments lined up for later this year, and while we can’t talk about them yet we would be happy to share more when we can.”

With The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority boosting their bus fleets and adding more services, and the A2Zero Plan, which aims to achieve citywide carbon neutrality by 2030, the addition of May Mobility within Ann Arbor will only add to the already booming sustainable-friendly public transportation system of the “Tree City.”

For more information visit the May Mobility website at

Website | + posts

Antonio Cooper is a freelance journalist from Detroit, Michigan. His coverage of music festivals and interviews with local celebrities appeared in The E-Current Magazine, The Detroit Metro Times, XXL Magazine, RichMagDigital, The Ann Arbor Observer, and Pop Magazine.