Austin’s Willingness To Car Share Signals Other Opportunities

Gas Pump | Half Way Between Austin and Houston

Image by George Dearing via Flickr

We just had a conversation yesterday with one of our friends about car sharing after seeing some related  news that Hertz will rent Nissan Leafs next year. She brought up a good point that perhaps this type of  widespread visibility for electric vehicles (EVs) could spur more car sharing options.

I do think there’s a clear tie in. Once folks can easily avoid the pump, it’s natural to start thinking about how to scale that across other parts of your life. The example that Paula used was the cost of maintaining a vehicle for students. By the time you figure in gas and parking, it adds up quick.

As Paula said, “why not  have a fleet of ‘shares’  between the big cities and start with some of the major campuses.”

That would that make sense for what’s known as the Texas Triangle – Houston, Austin and Dallas. It might not be far away.

This morning I noticed Austin was highlighted in a May series on FastCompany showcasing various smart cities across the country. What’s notable is the clip from the piece highlighting the enthusiastic uptake for Car2Go’s sharing program. That’s a great indicator for things to come. And don’t worry, Paula’s already sent an email to Car2Go.

[Update: To both ZipCar and Car2Go now.]

"The program lets city workers tap a free network of 200 smart cars and designated parking spaces for work errands — and pay by the minute to check a car out for personal use. In the first four months, demand was triple original estimates, and more than 1,000 employees climbed into the (shared) driver’s seat."



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