Click for next page ( 2


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 1
TCRP Report 108 Executive Summary Car-Sharing Where and How it Succeeds What is Car-Sharing? Car-sharing is a service that provides members more than 60,000 members in the United States with access to a fleet of vehicles on an hourly and nearly 11,000 in Canada. Despite rapid basis. Members reserve a car online or by phone, North growth, American however,Regions Car-Sharing car-sharing is 2005) (June still a niche walk to the nearest parking space, open the product, accounting for just 0.03% of the US doors with an electronic key card, and drive urban population and licensed drivers. off. They are billed at the end of the month for time and/or j Edmonton jj j Calgary j j Vancouver mileage. Victoria j Seattle Nelson jj Quebec City At the home, car-sharing can j Portland j j Ottawa/Gatineau Sherbrooke Montreal substitute for car ownership. Eugene j j j j j Kingston Boston j j jj j Minneapolis/St. Paul Toronto Kitchener/Guelph At the workplace, it provides j San Francisco j jj Madison Detroit Chicago Ann Arbor New York/New Jersey Philadelphia access to a vehicle for business j Boulder j j Rutledge Washington DC use and personal errands dur- j Aspen Chapel Hill jj Santa Barbara Los Angeles ing the day, allowing employees San Diego to avoid driving to work. By De- cember 2004, operators claimed j Existing j Planned 2005 North American Car-Sharing Regions (2005) US Car-Sharing Growth 75,000 1000 About This Report One of the newest additions to the Members transportation toolbox, car-sharing has the 60,000 800 Vehicles potential to change people's relationship to the car in dense, urban communities. 45,000 600 Car-sharing is usually run by independent Vehicles Members operators, but can help achieve many 30,000 400 of the goals of partner organizations such as developers, businesses, local governments, transit agencies and 15,000 200 universities. In turn, these partners are essential to car-sharing's success. 0 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 0 This report focuses on what partner organizations can do, the benefits that Source: Shaheen, Schwartz & Wipyewski (2004); Susan Shaheen, unpublished data. Note that 2004 data are for December, while 1998-2003 figures reflect June data they can expect to realize, and where points, meaning the chart overstates the rate of increase from 2003 to 2004. car-sharing can succeed. The full report is available at www.trb.org. Page ES-1

OCR for page 1
Car-Sharing Operators Car-sharing organizations can be for-profit Uses of Car-Sharing companies, cooperatives, or non-profits with Members use car-sharing for a range of trips, but an environmental and social change mission. rarely for the daily commute to work. Car-sharing is In Aspen, Colorado car-sharing is municipally used judiciously; the service is most often used when run. The residential market was the initial fo- members have things to carry, need a car to get to cus for most car-sharing operators. However, their destination, or have multiple stops to make. The Car-Sharing -- Where and How it Succeeds some have now found that business users are median number of trips per month is just two. the main source of growth. Commute Other Personal 2% 12% business Demographic Markets: Who Joins? Work- 25% related A high level of education is a defining char- 12% acteristic of car-sharing members in North America. Survey results for this study found Other that 35% of members have a Bachelor's degree, Recreation shopping 16% 17% and a further 48% some post-graduate work or Grocery an advanced degree. They tend to be in their shopping 16% 30s or 40s and have middle- to higher-incomes. Trip Purpose Almost all members are concerned about en- vironmental and social issues, and are more concerned with what a vehicle can be used for, rather than how it looks or its brand name. Guidelines for Where Car-Sharing Succeeds Car-Sharing and Variable Low High Growth Growth Other Transportation Modes Demographics Car-sharing is sometimes called the "miss- % 1-person households 30% 40%-50% ing link" in the package of alternatives to the Commute Mode Share private automobile. Members can use transit, % drive alone to work 55% 35%-40% cycling and walking for most of their daily % walk to work 5% 15%-20% trips, but have access to a car when required. Vehicle Ownership Car-sharing also complements taxis, which are % households with 10%-15% 35%-40% no vehicle better suited to one-way trips and provide an % households with option for those who cannot drive, and rental 60% 70-80% 0 or 1 vehicle cars which are cheaper for longer journeys. Neighborhood Characteristics Housing units per acre 5 5 Note: For most variables, the values are the suggested minimums that are needed for a viable car-sharing service in a given neighbor- hood. For the "% drive alone to work" variable, the values are the suggested maximums. Page September 2005 ES-2

OCR for page 1
Executive Summary Geographic Markets: Where Car-Sharing Works Car-sharing is a complement to other alterna- vehicle ownership rates are the best predictor tives to the private automobile. It only makes of a strong market for car-sharing. University sense as part of a wider transportation package, campuses also provide an important market in neighborhoods where transit, walking and niche. cycling are viable options. Car-sharing is not The picture in smaller communities is mixed. a panacea it cannot "paper over the cracks" While car-sharing can be found in places such and compensate for auto-oriented land use as Aspen, Colorado and Whistler, British Co- policies. lumbia, operators in Halifax, Nova Scotia and Car-sharing is overwhelmingly concentrated in Traverse City, Michigan have been forced to metropolitan cores around 95% of members close. Operators have also had limited success are found in these settings. High density, a good with expanding to suburban markets near pedestrian environment, a mix of uses and park- Seattle and San Francisco. The keys to making ing pressures all help car-sharing to succeed. car-sharing succeed in less urban areas appear Most important appears to be the ability to live to be community support, a strong champion, without a car or with just one vehicle. Low and volunteer involvement by members. The Impacts of Car-Sharing Vehicle Ownership By providing access to a vehicle for occasional trips, car-sharing enables households to give up their car or a second or third vehicle. On average, about 20% of car-sharing members do this, with even more forgoing the purchase of a new car. Thus, at least five private vehicles are replaced by each shared car and many studies, including research for this report, show substantially greater benefits. In turn, reduced vehicle ownership can lead to increased parking availability and less need for new parking. The wider benefits of reduced parking include cost savings; release of land for development; and less stormwater runoff. Vehicle Travel Most studies suggest that, on balance, car-shar- ing reduces vehicle travel particularly once a program matures and the "novelty" wears off. Page ES-3

OCR for page 1
The precise impacts can be hard to measure, Other Impacts however, because of two competing impacts: The other impacts of car-sharing include: Reduced Travel. Car-sharing changes the Lower emissions. Car-sharing reduces entire economics of driving, by convert- emissions both through cutting vehicle ing fixed costs into usage fees. When travel, and through the use of newer, fuel- households own a car, each additional efficient vehicles in many cases hybrids. trip costs very little, since the investment Increased transit ridership. By reduc- in car payments, insurance and taxes has Car-Sharing -- Where and How it Succeeds ing vehicle travel, car-sharing shifts some already been made. With car-sharing, trips to transit. In addition, nearly 20% of however, costs are directly proportional to car-sharing trips are accessed by transit the amount that members drive provid- another source of new ridership. Most ing a strong financial incentive to drive of these access trips are made at off-peak less. When car-sharing is available at the times. workplace, meanwhile, members can com- mute by transit, carpool or on foot, since a Cost savings. Many households and busi- car will be available for business meetings nesses join a car-sharing program because and errands during the day. they can save money on transportation. Induced Travel. Some car-sharing mem- Greater mobility. Car-sharing allows bers did not previously own a car, and people without a car to get to new places. will use the service to make new vehicle Demonstrations are also underway in San trips. In many respects, this is a benefit, Francisco and Seattle to evaluate the mo- since car-sharing is improving mobil- bility benefits to low-income households. ity. However, these new trips can offset reduced travel by members who sell cars. Environment/ Lower emissions Community Cost savings for development Layered Benefits Less congestion Better urban design More compact development Less energy/resources for vehicle manufacturing Transportation Lower parking demand System More fuel-efficient vehicles Less vehicle travel More transit ridership Individual/ Cost savings Business Greater mobility Convenience Firm Data More Speculative Page September 2005 ES-4

OCR for page 1
Executive Summary The Role of Partners Partner organizations are indispensable to the Who are the Partners? continued growth and viability of car-sharing. Partner organizations are composed of any Their help can be as basic as financial assistance entity that helps car-sharing get a stronghold and marketing. It can be as concrete as provid- in communities. This study examined the role ing parking spaces for car-sharers. And it can of five types of partners in detail: be as advanced as integrating policies requiring Local governments car-sharing into planning documents, or even Transit agencies codifying policies into tax laws. Developers Employers and businesses Partner Goals Universities Partners hope to achieve multiple goals through There are many other types of partners, car-sharing. Local governments are interested including grassroots community groups; in environmental and social benefits, such as Transportation Management Associations and reduced vehicle ownership and travel, and mo- other rideshare agencies; and federal and State bility for low-income households. Transit agen- agencies. cies want to increase ridership and revenue. Developers see the opportunity to provide an amenity for their tenants, and to gain speedier Types of Support project approvals. Employers and universities Marketing. Partners can assist car-sharing use car-sharing as an employee benefit, and as operators by giving them access to customers. a way to reduce auto commuting and parking For example, an employer can send e-mails demand. and provide mailing lists as a communication channel for the operator. If the partner has a Transportation Demand Management program, Who Initiates Car-Sharing Partnerships? car-sharing can be inserted into the overall marketing activities--outreach, promotions and Organization Initiating Partnership % transportation fairs. Car-Sharing Operator 41% Administration. Partners can commit admin- Staff at Partner Organization 30% istrative resources toward car-sharing, such Staff at Another Organization 11% as processing grants, lending office space, and Community/Advocacy Group 3% providing an interface with other departments Other 8% or agencies. Don't Know 8% Total 100% Funding. As well as in-kind contributions, Source: Web-based survey for this project partners sometimes provide direct financial assistance to help with start-up costs or special programs such as car-sharing for low-income neighborhoods. Partners can also help apply for external grants. Page ES-5

OCR for page 1
Parking. Making reserved parking spaces avail- Photo: PhillyCarShare. able for the car-sharing vehicles is one of the most useful actions a partner can take. Parking can be on-street or off-street, but needs to be convenient and visible. Transit Integration. Car-sharing is a comple- mentary mode to transit. Besides permitting Car-Sharing -- Where and How it Succeeds car-share operators to use parking at their sta- tions, transit operators can take a more proac- The City of Philadelphia is replacing many fleet vehicles with car- tive approach by integrating car-sharing with sharing and expects to save more than $9 million over five years. their fare systems. For example, car-sharing membership fees might be waived for transit pass holders, or a transit smartcard might be used to gain access to car-sharing vehicles. Memberships. Partners can indirectly provide funding to car-sharing operators by becoming members. In this way, they help sustain the car-sharing program while also demonstrat- ing leadership in promoting car-sharing and lending credibility to the idea. Some partners, such as the City of Philadelphia, have gone a step further by replacing fleet vehicles with a Partner organizations such as BART, a rail system in the San car-sharing program. Francisco Bay Area, provide valuable marketing assistance, helping car-sharing to grow. Portland, Oregon installs high-profile orange poles to promote the on- street car-sharing program. Page September 2005 ES-6

OCR for page 1
Executive Summary Barriers and Factors for Success As with any new concept, car-sharing faces chal- This study identified five key factors for success lenges in getting a stronghold as an alternative that support the development of car-sharing: transportation mode. One of the most funda- Identifying a champion for car-sharing, mental barriers relates to finding a partner; such as an elected official or high-placed staff member who recognizes the benefits car-sharing does not have a natural "home" in of car-sharing and works to promote it most agencies. Adopting supportive policies and regulations, such as zoning incentives What's more, most partner organizations do and inclusion of car-sharing in environ- not yet have a good understanding of how mental, transportation and corporate car-sharing works, and how it can help them sustainability plans achieve their goals. They may have unrealistic Providing funds to help car-sharing pro- grams become established expectations about the types of neighborhoods where car-sharing is economically viable, and Implementing supportive actions such as providing marketing, parking, and inte- be skeptical about its benefits. The public and gration with transit businesses, meanwhile, often fail to appreciate Selecting the right neighborhoods that the true costs of automobile ownership and have the density, walkability and transit use. This failure makes selling car-sharing as a service to help car-sharing thrive cost-saving measure difficult. Most barriers are local, but some issues may Other barriers include a lack of start-up fund- be best tackled on a national level. Many op- ing; regulatory obstacles such as zoning and erators have expressed interest in a national business licensing laws; the need to find visible, car-sharing association that could help promote affordable well-located parking; and land-use understanding; advocate for regulatory reform; patterns that favor the private automobile. It can and provide a forum for networking and data also be difficult to serve low-income popula- sharing. tions, since they are unlikely to be a profitable market for commercial operators. The Mechanics of Partnerships Most partnerships with car-sharing operators Until now, car-sharing programs have been sub- are informal in nature. In some cases, however, it ject to relatively little evaluation and monitor- may be appropriate to issue a Request for Propos- ing. The main performance measure for opera- als (RFP), particularly when a significant amount tors and their partners has been the "breath test" of financial or in-kind support is offered. is the program still alive and breathing? Contracts and Memoranda of Understanding As car-sharing matures, however, evaluation are often used in formalizing an understanding. will become more important. Performance data For example, where partners provide parking, can help solidify support for car-sharing within a simple, boilerplate document can address is- a partner organization and ensure that public sues such as liability, the number and location money is used responsibly. Evaluation may of spaces involved, and the level of any fees. also be a requirement if some sources of federal Page ES-7

OCR for page 1
funding are used. The depth of an evaluation provided by a partner. The more generous a will naturally vary with the extent of the car- partner in providing support, the more evalu- sharing program, and the amount of support ation and monitoring is warranted. Bringing Car-Sharing to a New Community There are a number of ways in which car-shar- Documenting the characteristics of neigh- ing can be established: borhoods that could support car-sharing Business venture. In a few cities, car-shar- Conducting preliminary market research Car-Sharing -- Where and How it Succeeds ing may be viable as a profit-making busi- or a feasibility study ness venture. Providing outreach to obtain institutional Public-private partnership. Partners will and community buy-in usually need to provide financial or other Providing financial or in-kind support incentives to entice operators. Integrating car-sharing with wider neigh- Grassroots effort. The feasibility of this borhood and transportation plans option depends on the interest and capac- ity of local groups, and the amount of Addressing other key barriers, such as partner support. licensing and zoning Municipally run. This option requires a Car-sharing is fundamentally a niche product strong, ongoing commitment from local government. that only makes sense in certain markets. The checklist below provides a simple assessment of Most communities, then, will need to be proac- whether a community is ready for car-sharing. tive if they want car-sharing as a local transpor- The more criteria that are met, the greater the tation option. Regardless of the organizational prospects for success. However, the potential arrangement, partners can help catalyze car- extent of car-sharing has yet to be fully explored, sharing through: and its ultimate reach will only be determined through experimentation and trial and error. Car-Sharing Checklist Does the community have neighborhoods with the right characteristics to make car-sharing viable? Are there ] neighborhoods with low auto ownership and use, where walking and transit are viable options? Are there established Transportation Demand Management programs in which car-sharing can be inserted; are ] there other commute trip reduction strategies that can recruit business members? ] What is the depth of interest in car-sharing from different types of partners? ] Is there a high-level champion with a strong commitment to car-sharing? Are there community groups that have shown interest in starting a car-sharing program and have the capacity ] to get a project off the ground? What incentives can partners provide for a commercial operator, such as start-up funding, marketing, zoning ] changes and parking provision? ] Is there an anchor member, such as a city or business that wishes to replace its vehicle fleet with car-sharing and can provide guaranteed baseline usage? Page September 2005 ES-8