MBA: Car Sharing
In the third episode of Moving Beyond the Automobile, we take a look at a more efficient way to use a car. Car sharing allows users to evaluate the full cost of each car trip, which encourages them to decide what the most appropriate mode choice is for a specific trip.
Zipcar, a leading global car sharing organization, reports that members walk and bike 10-15% more than they did before joining Zipcar. They also report that members save $600 a month when they choose car sharing over owning a private automobile.
So while car sharing isn't exactly "Moving Beyond the Automobile," it is a great way for cities and individuals to help make the transportation network more efficient and become less dependent on owning a private cars.
(Note: This series is made possible by funding from the Fund for The Environment & Urban Life.)
Robin Chase: [00:14] One of the things that intrigues me about both car sharing and ride sharing is that it can dramatically change the number of trips that an individual takes, and the number of people in that car. Car sharing makes people pay the full cost of each trip as they drive.
Mark Norman: [00:31] They save $600 per month in what they would have otherwise spent operating and parking and insuring a personal car. But they also tell us that it helps with personal health, that they walk, they bike 10 to 15% more than they did otherwise. Zipcar is a global car sharing organisation. Car sharing is a better way to use a car. It enables members to join simply with providing a drivers license, a credit card, they pay an annual fee and then they get a card in the mail that is their access to what I call is a flexible fleet at their fingertips, different types of cars that they can reserve for one all inclusive rate, by the hour or by the day. That rate includes gas, insurance of $300,000 of liability, more like a personal policy, and maintenance and home location parking. You pick up the car and return it to its home location.
Hans Vanderscheff: [01:25] I use car share in two main ways. I use it at home. My wife and I do own a car but we share a car between the two of us and often we need to go get things for our home or run errands or move furniture.
Mark Norman: [01:38] When a member joins zipcar, 40% of them tell us that they avoided buying a car or were able to sell a car thanks to the wheels when you want them convenience of zipcar.
Hans Vanderscheff: [01:48] The second way is that the non profit that I work for is called the Freshwater Trust and we use zipcar quite extensively for our travel in the region. Our staff go out to project sites and they use zipcar at that point.
Mark Norman: [02:02] We work closely with a number of our host municipalities that do a number of things to support car sharing and encourage good behaviour and good policy. A couple of things like the allocation of on street parking spaces and designating them and enforcing ticket and tow policies that support car sharing.
Gabe Klein: [02:20] We have taken public parking spaces and given them to car sharing companies to raise the visibility of car sharing. Now when people visit and they see these big orange poles on the streets, and they think about moving here, they realise they don’t need to have a car. Car sharing has become an extension of the public transportation system.
Mark Norman: [02:39] Some even walk the talk with their own municipal budgets where the district of Colombia uses zipcar technology in its city owned fleet to enable them to have fewer cars with the latest hybrid and environmental friendly technology.
Gabe Klein: [02:52] We have more people using car sharing per capita than almost anywhere in the country. Regionally through metro, through Arlington, through DC government, there was a push to promote car sharing, and I think that that’s one of the reasons we’ve seen a 5.6% decline in car registrations from 2005 to 2008.
Mark Norman: [03:15] Portland was one of the first cities in North America for car sharing, it started in 1998. In addition to being just a progressive, very walkable city with a very high use of cycling for daily commuting, about 9% of people in Portland cycle to work on a regular basis, they’ve also had a very progressive approach in city planning.
Dan Bower: [03:32] Beyond providing the spaces for the car sharing companies to use, the city supports car sharing by putting signage in each space and enforcing the spaces. Our most recent survey here in Portland shows the number of people who drive less than 1000 miles per year increased from 28% to 48% after they joined zipcar.
Robin Chase: [03:50]
So when people are car sharing, which means they’re paying for cars
by the hour or by the day, they totally rationalise which is the right
mode choice for any particular errand.