(Quebec) Quebec City taxis are ready to standardize and revitalize the look of their vehicles, like their Montreal colleagues who will soon be racing in two-ton cars. Taxi Coop is currently testing a minimalist but distinctive design in the capital.
“It takes an image of Quebec City. It’s very important, it’s very visionary. The world must be associated with the taxi industry, it is necessary that taxis associate with the city, “said Abdallah Homsy, president of Taxi Coop 5191 and the Regroupement des intermediaires du Québec (RITQ ), The day after the unveiling of the concept chosen by Montreal.
In the metropolis, the vehicles will be white with the roof and hood of a bright color, which will vary according to the affiliation of the owners. The word “hello” will also be printed on the doors. This dressing will cost between $ 1000 and $ 1500. The measure, voluntary but strongly suggested, must be financed by taxis.
In Quebec, the desire for uniformity is also present and is not new. The record was put on ice because of the fight against Uber, which completely destabilized the taxi industry. But Mr. Homsy thinks it necessary to put it back on top of the pile, precisely to distinguish it from the competition. The cooperative he chairs – in general assembly and in elections this week – plans to make it a priority for the next year.
In the past, Quebec City taxi co-ops have offered to favor the purchase of black or dark gray cars. This is to be “more protocolary” and because these colors are very available in the automobile market, explains Mr. Homsy. He now wants to sit down with the City of Quebec to find out what his expectations are and to develop a brand image that will satisfy both parties by involving marketing specialists. A previously formed committee has failed because of the economic context.
Meanwhile, Taxi Coop has developed some scenarios with a local lettering company. The cheapest is currently being tested on six cars that are strolling around town. It is a tiled banner of blue and gray and bordered by yellow lines, affixed to the top of the doors and incorporating the name Taxi Coop. There is, a little lower, a reference to the mobile application that allows to order and pay his taxi in a few clicks. It costs about $ 150.
A more elaborate concept would make it possible to display images of the Québec City attractions, such as the Château Frontenac, for example, on vehicle doors. But that would require obtaining permits and paying $ 1,000 more. A complete change in appearance or color would cost around $ 1,800 to $ 2,000 according to estimates received.
Abdallah Homsy speaks of the banner as a “first step”. The comments received so far are positive, he said, and a decision will be taken on wider dissemination, again on a voluntary basis.
He wants all taxi cars in Quebec City to be there when a permanent concept is chosen. Only the lanterns would be different, as now. “When one takes the financial element, it is always what can lead to a conflict. What we think is that we need to have an image and then struggle how to get the money to the members, “says the RITQ spokesman.
The Mayor of Quebec, Régis Labeaume, kept his distance from this file on Monday. He recalled that efforts have already been made to boost the image of the capital’s taxi fleet, but nothing has succeeded. “We dropped because we were asking too much money from the City,” said the elected official, who wants to keep an eye on what is happening in Montreal.