In side hustle city (AKA Portland), 20 percent of Lyft drivers own their own business

Portland's economy just added $35 million in 2017 thanks to Lyft, according to the cab app company's 2018 Economy Impact Report.

The study was conducted by Land Econ Group, a San Francisco-based land planning and real estate development economics consulting firm, and it showed that Portland passengers saved 1,400,000 in travel hours during 2017 because of Lyft, saving time valued at $43 million.SUBMITTED: LYFT - While 20 percent of Lyft drivers in Portland are also entrepreneurs, 91 percent drive fewer than 20 hours per week.

"The ability to connect people to the local businesses in their community is what makes Lyft so special. Every day, people are accessing new areas of their region in ways they haven't before, making their daily travels quicker, and are continuing to invest in their cities," said Nathan Lawless, Portland market manager. "Based on these survey results passengers are saving time, spending locally and reconsidering personal vehicle ownership when using Lyft in their daily lives, which leads to a tremendous long-term impact on our local economies."

The study researched 52 metropolitan regions across the U.S. including Portland, examining travel habits, driver and passenger communities and behavior changes in 2017.

The city where young people used to go to retire — a running joke from TV show Portlandia about how affordable it (used to be) to live here and pursue creative passions — today Portland is a city of side hustles if you want to pay rent.

Lyft fills that need for some entrepreneurs: 20 percent of Portland Lyft drivers own their own business.

In the study's information about Portland's Lyft drivers, 91 percent drive fewer than 20 hours a week, 77 percent have connected with a new friend or business opportunity from a ride, 67 percent are primary earners for their households, and 32 percent are women.

As for passengers, 53 percent use their car less because of Lyft, 50 percent now explore more areas of Portland, 40 percent use Lyft to get around when public transit doesn't operate, and 10 percent are veterans.

Founded in 2012, Lyft is the fastest-growing rideshare company in the nation. Throughout last year, Lyft expanded its operations and access to 95 percent of the U.S. population, compared to 54 percent at the beginning of 2017.

By Jules Rogers
Reporter, The Business Tribune
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