Navier, a creator and operator of zero-emission maritime vessels, announced yesterday a first-of-its-kind pilot program to provide water transit services to San Francisco Bay Area commuters.

Stripe, a financial infrastructure platform for businesses, will be Navier's initial partner in this program, with Navier providing water shuttle services for Stripe employees from Larkspur, Calif., to Stripe's U.S. headquarters in South San Francisco.

"Navier's mission is to introduce the next generation of high-speed, zero-emissions water transportation, starting right here in the Bay Area," Sampriti Bhattacharyya, co-founder and CEO of Navier, said in a statement. "This pilot program will connect parts of the Bay Area where traditional ferries are not available, cutting commutes that take an hour or more to less than 30 minutes door-to-door – all with no carbon emissions."

The pilot program with Stripe will provide a valuable case study as Navier explores ways to efficiently reduce employee commute times and emissions in coastal cities, Bhattacharyya said. "Today, 46% of the world's population lives in crowded coastal areas, which continue to struggle with traffic congestion, fossil fuel pollution and a lack of affordable housing options. Our pilot program demonstrates a clear path forward for these cities to reduce traffic, costs and emissions; connect business hubs with more affordable areas; and unlock the productive potential of millions of workers who would otherwise spend uncounted hours stuck in traffic."

Transportation services under the Stripe pilot program will be operated by Navier Mobility, the company's water transit arm. Navier will provide one of its flagship N30 six-passenger boats at launch in March 2024, followed by another five to seven boats.

The N30 currently seats six passengers. Navier is also developing expanded models that will seat up to 30 passengers for higher-traffic routes. Navier estimates that each 30-passenger hydrofoil model will reduce automobile usage by the equivalent of 120 cars, with a commensurate reduction in traffic and carbon emissions in coastal cities.

Navier said its goal is to change the future of water travel by creating the next generation of clean, high-speed water transit. Its flagship vessel, the N30, is America's first all-electric hydrofoil boat, with a design that reduces operational costs to 38 cents per mile, a 10-times reduction compared to traditional boats, Navier said. The company said its N30 also boasts the longest range of any electric boat in the world, clocking in at 100 miles at cruising speed.

The N30 addresses the two key challenges that make smaller boats (i.e., 24' - 45') unfit for scalable transportation: namely, cost and comfort. Gliding four feet above the water, the N30 eliminates hydrodynamic resistance and provides a smooth, quiet ride with no sea sickness. It also eliminates the extensive infrastructure needed to operate large ferries - as it can operate from any marina - creating opportunities for more frequent, more efficient trips with higher capacity utilization, Navier said.