Demand-responsive transport with Proxi’bus

Publié le 21 February 2024
Fabienne - Conductrice du Proxibus - Orée de la Brie
In the context of the tender renewal process carried out by the Region, Keolis Portes et Val de Brie took over the sector of the Communauté de Communes de l‘Orée de la Brie as of January 1, 2023. The company resumed the operation of 34 commercial bus lines in Pays Briard, including services operating in the Communautés de Communes de l’Orée de la Brie et du Val Briard. As of July 1, 2023, Keolis Portes et Val de Brie opted to implement our Geolite solution for the management and organization of Demand-responsive transport (DRT) in the Val Briard area.

In line with this, since January 1, 2024, Hubup has been providing the Geolite tool to Keolis for the management of Demand-responsive transport on behalf of the Communauté de communes de l’Orée de la Brie.

On this occasion, we delved into the profession of a driver, particularly focusing on Demand-responsive transport. We traveled the roads of the region with Fabienne, bus driver of the Proxi’bus, to understand the challenges and issues associated with her profession.

Transport à la Demande - Orée de la Brie
The Proxi’bus allows any person in need to travel from one stop to another, without limitations imposed by a specific route or schedule, in the municipalities of Brie-Comte-Robert, Servon, Varennes-Jarcy, and Chevry-Cossigny.


Since when has the Proxi’bus been in operation?

We have been operating the Proxi’bus for several years now, but I personally started with the Proxi’bus on October 2, 2006.

And before the Proxi’bus, what were you doing?

At first, I worked in a printing press, and then I changed my profession by moving towards public transportation. I enjoy driving, and I had the opportunity to start working as a bus driver on regular and school routes in the Brie-Comte-Robert area. After eleven months on those routes, the company offered me the Proxi’bus. I have been here for 16 years now, and I know the area like the back of my hand. With the Proxi’bus, I work from Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm, and it’s really enjoyable.

The service has been present in the region for quite some time. Have you noticed any changes in demand since you started?

Oh yes! We have more and more customers, and the service has expanded in terms of coverage.

In terms of clientele, do you encounter the same customers, or are you always transporting new clients?


And what types of customers do you transport on a daily basis?

Customers of all ages, going to work, taking a stroll, doing their shopping, or heading to medical appointments. I also transport children to school, and we have individuals with reduced mobility and wheelchair users. The clientele is quite diverse.

This mobility service is primarily intended for people with reduced mobility, isn’t it?

Yes and no, everyone can benefit from the Proxi’bus.

Right now, we are currently in front of the high school. Is this a recurring stop in your day?

Yes, indeed! I regularly pick up students, dropping them off at home or taking them t high school or other educational institutions. Please note, I don’t provide dedicated school transportation.

For what reasons would high school students choose to take the Proxi’bus instead of a school bus?

Because, precisely, there are no dedicated school bus lines, or they are existing lines only in the morning and late afternoon. In contrast, the Proxi’bus can serve during off-peak hours.

The service operates only from Monday to Friday. And why not on Saturdays?

Originally, we had offered Saturday afternoons, but it didn’t work out. We had very few reservations on that day.

Why do passengers prefer Demand-responsive transport over regular bus lines?

The regular bus lines can feel impersonal, whereas with demand-responsive transport, you create a connection and provide personalized mobility. With the Proxi’bus, as a driver, we’re not in a daily routine; reservations come in, get canceled, the routes vary, and no two days are the same.

Generally, I imagine you have observed an evolution in the mobility options in the area. Is that correct?

Yes, absolutely! Mobility operators have changed, and the scope of the offering has expanded.

La Communauté de communes offers, in addition to the Proxi’bus, a mobility service called the Brie Bus. What are the differences compared to the Proxi’bus?

Today is a bit special; I don’t have my orange Proxi’bus vehicle as it’s undergoing maintenance, so I’m using the Brie Bus vehicle. The Brie Bus is free. It’s an urban shuttle with fixed schedules, operating on Sunday mornings and public holidays. In contrast, the Proxi’bus is a paid service, operating on-demand from Monday to Friday, serving four municipalities. Travelers reserve their spot on the Proxi’bus by phone or online.
Prise de service - Orée de la Brie
Proxi'bus et Geolite
Transport à la demande - Orée de la Brie

For you, what would be the qualities of a good driver?

Patience is crucial. every customer has their own personality, so it’s important to be friendly and sincere.

Yes, and above all, it’s a job that involves close interaction. Do you confirm?

Yes, absolutely, a job that involves relationships as well. I really appreciate this closeness, the assistance we provide to the clients. They value it a lot, so one must be patient. Of course, magnanimity is required; we should try to fix things. Being cautious is also essential, paying attention to the surroundings, the passengers, and also the vehicle, which may vary in size depending on the service.

Where does your passion for driving come from? Is it a family trait?

Yes, it runs in the family. I’ve always enjoyed driving, and I’ve turned it into my profession.

It is also a rather solitary job, what do you think about that?

Yes and no. I always have passengers, which allows me to maintain connections, but I also appreciate the solitary aspect behind the wheel of my vehicle. It’s about finding a balance.

What do you enjoy on a daily basis with your job?

The relationships with my clients.

What do you find most enjoyable in your job and the most challenging to handle?

Adaptation is key; one needs to be flexible with last-minute reservations. Normally, for a same-day reservation, we require a minimum of two hours between the time the client calls and the actual reservation.

And the most enjoyable aspect of it all?

The schedule. It’s from Monday to Friday.

Do you observe consistency in the activity, or is there seasonality?

The activity is relatively consistent, although we do notice a slight decrease during school holidays. That being said, passengers still need to travel during these times for medical appointments or grocery shopping.

Thank you to Fabienne and the teams at Keolis Portes et Val de Brie for their trust! Wishing them a safe journey.