If you're heading to Duluth's Homegrown Music Festival, you might be able to get around with Uber or Lyft for the first time ever.
The Duluth City Council approved an ordinance Monday that would allow ride-share companies like Uber and Lyft to operate in the city, which is something many in the Northland have been waiting for.
It'll take 30 days for the ordinance to go into effect, so that means Uber and Lyft will be allowed to operate in Duluth as early as April 27 – just three days before the popular Duluth Homegrown Music Festival.
GoMN has reached out to Uber and Lyft to see if they plan to launch service in Duluth at that time. We'll update this story when we hear back.
Taxi companies worried
As with other cities that have adopted ordinances to regulate these "transportation network companies" (aka TNCs), there were some concerns.
Especially from taxi companies, which are worried that allowing ride-share companies would put them out of business, the Duluth News Tribune reports.
But City Councilor Noah Hobbs, who introduced the ordinance, said these companies are probably coming to Duluth with or without an ordinance, the paper says. So he argues having something on the books that regulates TNCs is the best option.
"I believe we struck a fair balance in creating a level playing field for the traditional cab industry, while ultimately moving Duluth forward by embracing the sharing economy, and most importantly providing another transportation option for residents," Hobbs told GoMN Tuesday.
Uber and Lyft are available in many major Minnesota cities. They launched service in Rochester, Mankato and St. Cloud earlier this month, and they're also available in the Twin Cities and Fargo, North Dakota.