East Bay Times, May 30 2018
Starting recently, up to 35 Gig Car Share vehicles were launched on the main island of Alameda, ready to be used for one-way trips between the Island, core East Bay communities and two San Francisco locations.
On May 1, the Alameda City Council approved an agreement with the company for up to 50 Gig Car Share vehicles on Island (Gig Car Share has none yet on Bay Farm Island). Car sharing is meant, among other goals, to reduce car ownership and provide greater transportation choices.
Car sharing is not new to Alameda, as the Island already has “dedicated space” car sharing at four locations with Getaround (formerly City CarShare), along with peer-to-peer car sharing, which allows Alamedans to rent their private vehicles to neighbors.
The May agreement represents a third type of car sharing called “one-way” or “point-to-point,” in which members are able to rent available vehicles and end trips anywhere in designated areas. For Gig Car Share, designated areas include two parking lots in San Francisco; the city of Albany; and the core areas of Oakland and Berkeley, which includes seven BART stations — Fruitvale, West Oakland, Lake Merritt, North Berkeley, Ashby, Rockridge and MacArthur.
Car sharing is said to not only reduces driving costs for individuals and businesses but increase access to vehicles, including for lower-income individuals. It’s also claimed to reduce vehicle purchases and vehicle miles traveled, with each vehicle removing seven to 11 privately owned vehicles from the roads.
Today, 5.1 percent of Alameda households reportedly do not own a vehicle, which has more than doubled in the last 10 years, demonstrating how more households in Alameda could benefit from a one-way car sharing program.
Car share vehicles also tend to be less polluting and more fuel-efficient than typical personal vehicles and have more safety features that help avoid or reduce the impact of collisions. Car sharing is defined as a membership-based service, which allows all qualified, licensed drivers to make vehicle trips with the use of a rented vehicle without a separate written requirement for each trip.
Gig Car Share has a team of fleet operators who clean and fuel the cars throughout the communities they serve. For more information, visit gigcarshare.com.
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