“Carsharing 2000”: Sustainable Transport’s Missing Link

Paris, 21 October 2013. How much we learned about car sharing, and more importantly sustainable eb-tallinn-statementtransport in cities, over the last decade and a half? To put that question into perspective, please find below the full text of a collaborative report prepared here in Paris with colleagues from around the world which does a pretty good job of summing up the state-of-the-art state of thinking about these matters at the end of the 20th century. Have a look and tell us what you think.

Carsharing 2000: Sustainable Transport’s Missing Link

Eric Britton, Paris, January 17, 1999

 – – > Full report available here.

A word of introduction:

For several decades now there has been in transport circles some marginal discussion about the concept of people sharing cars — as opposed to the familiar owner/driver model which dominated virtually all of the last century.  Over the years there has also been a certain amount of experimentation and examples of people in specific places actually doing it in a variety of manners and with a considerable range of degrees of success.

But suddenly it’s the Year 2000, a new century is on us, and, as we all know, past patterns do not always hold on forever, particular in a climate of change.  Never mind the extremely rapid changes that we have been seeing in recent years in terms of people, their mobility choices, the environments in which they move around in their daily lives, and the exploding universe of technologies that make all this movement possible, including in new ways that most of us have never even dreamed about in the past.

Have you ever thought, for example, about what it means to own your own car in a city? Typically, this is something that you actually use barely an hour a day, less than five percent of the time, while it costs you on the order of anywhere from ten percent to up to a third of your net income. Doesn’t that sound to you like something that might be a candidate for some imaginative reshuffling…. if you have a choice that is?

The following summary attempts to provide a quick introduction to a concept that directly addresses this anomalous situation and does indeed, for the first time, offer some interesting alternatives. And although the basic concept will not be familiar to many people, our goal here is to put it before you and at the same time lead you to further information and details, just in case it captures your interest.  It takes the form of a few questions, selected on the basis that these are among those most often posed to us when people ask about the concept and the reasons why we think it is an idea for its time.

As is appropriate to our age, this is being prepared and presented as a multi-media document. Thus, you can either access and read it in print form, or alternatively you can access it freely on the World Wide Web (at www.ecoplan.org/carshare), and from there you can link directly to a number of interesting sources, documents and actual projects, which will help to ram the concept home. You may as well know about it, since an awful lot of people are going to be doing it.  Including probably you.

Eric Britton
The World Carshare Consortium
EcoPlan International, Paris
January 17, 1999

 – – > Full report available here.

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carsharing 2000 essum

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 – – > Full report available here.

eb-about the editor - 18oct13

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