Sharing cars, sharing bikes

philly car share car

A car share car in Philadelphia. / photo: Flickr user glokbell (cc)

Capital CarShare, the group planning a non-for-profit car sharing org for the Capital Region, has put together a very detailed plan for the service. It includes explanations of how the service would work, neighborhoods where it would set, and projected finances.

The report is at the link above. It's also embedded after the jump.

The proposed service would include three membership levels (with discounts for yearly memberships):
+ Basic - $0/month, $9/hour, $0.25/mile
+ Silver - $10/month, $7/hour, $0.25/mile
+ Gold - $30/month, $5/hour, $0.25/mile

The plan also ranks areas in the order of expected roll out of the service over three years:

1. Downtown Albany, Center Square, and University Heights
2. Albany's Park South and Pine Hills neighborhoods
3. Arbor Hill, South End, and Delaware Avenue neighborhoods

There are a lot more details in the reports and it's worth taking a look if you're interested.

Earlier on AOA: Lauren Alpert talked about the car sharing plan on Soapbox back in June.

[via TSTC / thanks, Matthew]

Bike sharing
The city of Albany, Capital District Transportation Committee, bike-planning-famous consultancy Alta Planning and Design are (emphasis added) "conducting a study on what bike route signage is needed in the City of Albany and how bike sharing might be implemented here." There's a public meeting about the study next Monday (September 24) at The Linda at 6 pm. The blurbage says they'll also be looking for public input at the meeting. (Poster embedded after the jump.)

Capital CarShare Business Plan

Albany Bike Signage and Bike Share Public Meeting 2012-09-24 Flier


Good news that someone has put this much thought into the car sharing idea. It all looks good on paper. But there is that bit about raising the start up funds and finding the talent to implement it.

I didn't see any ID in there about the people who put it together other than "The consultants". Any idea who those people are? How would someone who wanted to talk to/invest in this idea get in contact with those people. Or are they just putting this out there as a blueprint and hoping someone takes the ball and runs with it?

I hope the car sharing plan takes off. Neither my partner or I own a car (we both live downtown and walk/bike). It is nice not owning a car in ways because we never get parking tickets and we don't have to worry about switching sides. But a car every once and awhile when we have to purchase lots of groceries or heavy/bulky items from the store would be helpful.

So it would be about 30 to 40 dollars to go from Center Square to Colonie Center for under 4 hours. Yea, I can see folks from Albany all over that, yea right.

Hi code Monkey:

I was one of the consultants on the project. I worked with two colleagues who have moved onto other projects. I have been helping representatives from CDTA, CDTC and other stakeholders to continue the project forward. We are working incorporating as an organization to be better able to apply for grants.

Anyone interested in more information can e-mail, find CapCar on Facebook or capcar518 on Twitter.


Lauren Alpert

@Wag, I would gladly pay $30-$40 every month or two to make a large trip around the Capital Region to snag the larger things in life that are to cumbersome to take by bus to my home in the Delaware Ave neighborhood. Beats paying $350 a month (on a $20,000 car payment), $20 a week in gas, $90 in car insurance a month, and who knows how little or much maintenace/repairs can be. Since I've ditched my car (got 230,000k on it before it died and when shopping around for a new one, it just wasn't worth the ball and chain expense), I've saved close to $6,500-$8,000 a year. $500 a year carsharing once a month saves me $6,000-$7,500 to vacation and not baby sit a car.

I suspect most people would use a car share for picking up large purchases, rather than 4 hours of mall-crawling.
For example, maybe picking up a large flat-packed patio set at Colonie Center, or something equally bulky at Lowes? Combine that with a stop at Trader Joe's or BJ's and bring a friend to share the cost? Its a totally affordable 12 mile ($3) plus two hours for $18 split between two people.

The cost isn't bad when you compare it with owning a car! We gave up our second car a couple of years ago. I rent a car when I need to go somewhere beyond the bus route, and the bike won't cut it. I've spent maybe $500 in rentals. You can't buy a reliable car for that, not to mention insurance and maintenance. I think that these rates are lower than for zip cars but not sure.

This is great! I've been hoping for car sharing in Albany for years. In addition to making financial sense, it is a real, concrete step toward addressing the shortage of parking spots in our neighborhoods--it gets rid of some cars! Let's make this happen!

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