Now it’s even easier to make a quick drive to your destination without the burden of purchasing and owning a car. Redwood City and SamTrans unveiled the Zipcar car-share program on Wednesday, available for any resident, visitor or employee of a local business to use.
The program, funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), has been growing in popularity for those car-less residents who still need to make the occasional trip, according to SamTrans. It also resonates with eco-conscious who want to reduce their carbon footprint. National studies have shown that average vehicle miles traveled per driver is reduced by 40 percent when car owners switch to car sharing, according to a statement from the city.
Three Zipcars will be stationed in the adjacent Caltrain parking lot to use on an as-needed basis. Six additional cars will be parked at two other Redwood City locations in the future.
The program is part of the a plan to provide various sustainable transportation options that will also include a bike share program as well as vanpools that take commuters from the transit center to office spaces in Redwood City or pick up residents at their homes or at communal meeting spots.
The pilot program will last for two years, then will be evaluated to determine its effectiveness. Depending on the results, the practice could be replicated in other communities around the Bay Area, according to a SamTrans statement.
Zipcar members sign up online, and can reserve the vehicles by the hour or for up to several days, starting from $8 per hour or $78 per day for the “occasional driver” plan.
The reservation price includes up to 180 miles of driving per day, insurance, gas, and roadside assistance. Members can reserve Zipcars online (www.zipcar.com), over the phone, or by using Zipcar’s mobile applications for both iPhone and Android, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.