CINCINNATI -- Downtown bar-hoppers, convention-goers and business travelers needing to get around the Cincinnati region soon could be able to quickly hail a private car service with the tap of a smartphone app.
Launching full operations in Cincinnati, however, may not be seamless as Uber could face regulations hurdles and potential backlash from long-established cab operators. City law requires taxis to have in-vehicle meters and drivers to have special taxi licenses. Uber has neither.
"We don't need (Uber)," said Zaq Dhudhi, owner of RiverFront Taxi Services. "We have a lot of taxis in Cincinnati, and we do our job. We're good for Cincinnati. I don't want to fight, but we pay for licenses – and if they don't have a license, how are they going to operate?"
City Council has made efforts in recent years to loosen the reins on taxi regulations, and some city leaders view Uber's quick and efficient service as another puzzle piece in Downtown's resurgence. Uber has been popular among Millennials and visitors in places like Boston, New York and San Francisco.
“Our understanding is they’re ready to go,” Cincinnati City Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld said. “If something arises, we can address it.”
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