Last week New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a move to put a cap on the growth of the popular smartphone app-based transportation company Uber.
He planned to limit the number of cars Uber would be allowed to field across the city. But this week, in the face of criticism, de Blasio has abandoned his plan.
De Blasio’s plan was considered a blatant attempt at protectionism for the Big Apple’s taxi companies, but Uber’s many fans were not appreciative of the mayor’s crony capitalism.
Even The New York Times noted that City Hall was inundated with complaints from Uber users.
Uber also quickly responded with a clever addition to its phone app that explained to users why cars would be unavailable in the future if de Blasio got his plan put into place.This move further galvanized Uber users.
The Mayor’s new tact may only defuse the argument for a time, though. Along with de Blasio’s current aboutface on his plan to limit Uber’s growth, the company has agreed to participate in a four-month study on the effect of Uber on the vehicle-for-hire industry.
One aspect of the agreement would have Uber release to the city a large amount of data that the city has been interested in for some time.
The mayor’s office also promises that this new plan will be part of a wide-ranging study on the entire private transportation industry in the Big Apple.
Uber still holds that the city is doing its level best to hurt its business in the city, but city officials insist that it would have been too difficult to study traffic patterns with Uber growing at such a quick clip and that they only want to see what impact the company is having on the city.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org