Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

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jw138
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby jw138 » December 15th, 2015, 2:59 pm

Taxi service isn't a good analogy. A taxi doesn't need to be resident in a neighborhood that infrequently uses taxi service. Yet, when desired a simple call will bring it into that less serviced neighborhood.

And, the taxi rule was put in place to ensure that there's at least some form of transportation afforded to everyone in every neighborhood. It was put in place long prior to all of the various modern alternatives we have now. Does it even apply to Lyft and Uber? Yes, we do need to ensure that everyone has access to some form of transportation, but do we need to ensure that everyone has access to all forms of transportation?

Car sharing services add an additional choice to our ever increasing transportation arsenal. They do provide "transportation" but it's of a unique nature and comes with its own unique needs and limitations that aren't necessarily present in other transportation services. To treat them all with identical constraints would handcuff the whole and provide little ability to innovate.

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Sacrelicio » December 15th, 2015, 3:23 pm

jw138 wrote:Taxi service isn't a good analogy. A taxi doesn't need to be resident in a neighborhood that infrequently uses taxi service. Yet, when desired a simple call will bring it into that less serviced neighborhood.

And, the taxi rule was put in place to ensure that there's at least some form of transportation afforded to everyone in every neighborhood. It was put in place long prior to all of the various modern alternatives we have now. Does it even apply to Lyft and Uber? Yes, we do need to ensure that everyone has access to some form of transportation, but do we need to ensure that everyone has access to all forms of transportation?

Car sharing services add an additional choice to our ever increasing transportation arsenal. They do provide "transportation" but it's of a unique nature and comes with its own unique needs and limitations that aren't necessarily present in other transportation services. To treat them all with identical constraints would handcuff the whole and provide little ability to innovate.
And Car2Go cars just get left wherever the user ends up, and if not many people use them in Northside...so you end up with cars left in areas that aren't close to users, making those cars useless. The cities could sponsor service in those areas.

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Sacrelicio » December 15th, 2015, 3:35 pm

Man, I was looking at the 3 main car share sites...Car2Go seems to have the best access. I could book one a couple blocks from my house right now if I needed to. The others are clustered in and around the downtowns. Might have to consider a membership.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby mattaudio » December 15th, 2015, 3:41 pm

They're all car-sharing, but very very different business models. HourCar and ZipCar aren't designed to be used by people who live in our neighborhood, Sacrelicio. But if you live in a building right near their car, you can sign up and reserve that car in advance. It's more reliable, in a sense, but less distributed in terms of the origin-destination options it is intended to serve.

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jw138
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby jw138 » December 15th, 2015, 3:52 pm

HourCar and ZipCar didn't work for me either. Car2Go works GREAT! I generally take the bus when I need to get somewhere because it's the cheapest means of transportation, period. However, if I'm in a hurry, need to pick up something large or heavy, or if I'm going somewhere that either isn't served by bus or requires multiple transfers, then I take Car2Go. It's cheaper, faster, and more convenient than taxi, Lyft, or Uber. If you have a few drinks at your destination then a taxi, Lyft, or Uber is required to get back. I feel very lucky to live somewhere that affords such a variety of transportation methods. I hope they're able to become highly successful and eventually expand metro-wide.

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Sacrelicio » December 15th, 2015, 3:54 pm

mattaudio wrote:They're all car-sharing, but very very different business models. HourCar and ZipCar aren't designed to be used by people who live in our neighborhood, Sacrelicio. But if you live in a building right near their car, you can sign up and reserve that car in advance. It's more reliable, in a sense, but less distributed in terms of the origin-destination options it is intended to serve.
Ah OK...where do live roughly? Are you actually in "North Richfield" or South Minneapolis?

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby mattaudio » December 15th, 2015, 3:57 pm

Sacrelicio wrote:Are you actually in "North Richfield" or South Minneapolis?
Correct.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby MNdible » December 15th, 2015, 4:05 pm

South South Minneapolis.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby xandrex » December 15th, 2015, 6:58 pm

amiller92 wrote:Thanks for the agreement. Without going back to look, I thought Car2Go paid actual parking rates in Minneapolis, but here it looks like they pay an annual rate per car, which the city can set based on actual usage. Wonder if that works out as a wash.

Otherwise, they get exemption from time limits greater than two hours and permission to park in permitted areas (because they pay for a blanket permit), which isn't much if anything in terms of subsidy.
I once did some back-of-the-napkin math and found that a Car2Go parked every day meters are regularly enforced (Sundays in most areas and holidays) from 8 am to 10 pm would be paying $0.38/hour for the fee they pay the city. Which ends up being a pretty good deal, since the cars are being driven during a decent chunk of those hours, and when they are parked, they're frequently on streets that aren't metered.


As to the pull-back in St. Paul, I'm awfully conflicted. I want to make sure both cities are adequately served throughout their borders. At the same time, a car left in an area that sees little use is one less car for someone who lives in a high-use (and presumably more urban) neighborhood that might be relying on the service. Even in my fairly urban neighborhood, there's been a few times that I've tried to use Car2Go only to find that I'd need to walk so far just to get the car that the time savings versus transit would be pitiful. How useful are cars sitting on your street if nobody is using them? And is that hurting the service overall by decreasing its usefulness for those who are already using it?

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby EOst » December 15th, 2015, 7:37 pm

jw138 wrote:Taxi service isn't a good analogy. A taxi doesn't need to be resident in a neighborhood that infrequently uses taxi service. Yet, when desired a simple call will bring it into that less serviced neighborhood.
Neither does a Car2go. Other businesses have to pay people to drive those vehicles, and Car2go doesn't, but they certainly could hire people to do it. Or if that isn't possible, they could offer discounted rates or credits to people willing to drive from a low-demand area to a higher-demand one. They already do something similar for snow emergencies.

Maybe that would lead to a higher rate. Maybe that would lead to lower profits. Maybe it simply wouldn't work anymore. But they never claimed that Car2go is not profitable as-is, and the city has legitimate interests here as well.
And, the taxi rule was put in place to ensure that there's at least some form of transportation afforded to everyone in every neighborhood. It was put in place long prior to all of the various modern alternatives we have now. Does it even apply to Lyft and Uber?
No, but that's a problem.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby RailBaronYarr » December 15th, 2015, 8:32 pm

We went around this whole thing before. I very much sympathize with the argument EOst is making. Maybe one way to put C2G in the "not evil" camp is that they actually came here and rolled out service to all parts of Minneapolis first, and then fairly quickly extended it to all parts of St Paul. Including poor and racially concentrated areas. So it's not like they were just ignoring these people under the guise of capitalism and "slow rolling until they get critical mass of users to extend service to other areas." And, to be even more fair, they gave it a year and a half in St Paul. They maybe would have rolled it out quicker but StP (along with Transit for Livable Communities) were skeptical and delayed it a bit.

On a personal level, I'm right in the sweet spot of users who are just well-off enough to use this when I'm in a pinch and $5-10 is worth it to save 30-40 minutes of a slow bus in the off-peak or when I needed to be at my kid's doctor appointment or something, but not so well-off that driving a car for every trip and owning a second vehicle makes sense to my family. And I generally want things like C2G to stick around to make my car-lite lifestyle work out so I use it maybe a few times I otherwise wouldn't. Even still, I only spent $380 on all fees (including taxes) between Oct14 and Sept15 on C2G. I honestly don't know how many people without much disposable income it takes to make a service area worth it, or what it would take to subsidize them by getting people like me to move cars around. I can tell you that I'd be pretty reluctant to head way out of my way from work in DT SP to get a car from Arcade & Maryland.

I think maybe my distaste with the things C2G is being called on to provide or do seem out of place with other market sectors. Transportation is important. So is food. We don't require HyVee to open a location in every quadrant of the city if they open one in SW Minneapolis, even if they would provide fresh produce at reasonable prices. Maybe we should worry more about this or require something, but we're not today. CMs don't generally kvetch about freight or UPS trucks "using the public right of way for profit" the way Dan Bostrom did (and even if we did, the city negotiated a contract to cover parking revenue anyway).

Maybe I'm just wishing the discussion around these areas was better? Like, if we think there's value in having a service like C2G (privately provided & reliant on profits to stay in business) in areas that don't sustain themselves, why not put $$ into it ourselves? Like, work with them to link transit card accounts to C2G accounts, and give anyone who makes <80% AMI like $X0/mo in C2G credits to use. Otherwise we're asking C2G, a single entity, to shoulder the burden of gaps in our crummy transit/bike network, with the only leverage being that we have a contract with them to pay for parking? If the city feels so strongly about that, maybe it should charge the rest of the people who drive and park on its streets and fund more transit or afforable housing (etc) with that cash. What happens if they go out of business or take their ball & leave, are we better or worse off as a city?

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Sacrelicio » December 15th, 2015, 10:08 pm

EOst wrote:
jw138 wrote:Taxi service isn't a good analogy. A taxi doesn't need to be resident in a neighborhood that infrequently uses taxi service. Yet, when desired a simple call will bring it into that less serviced neighborhood.
Neither does a Car2go. Other businesses have to pay people to drive those vehicles, and Car2go doesn't, but they certainly could hire people to do it. Or if that isn't possible, they could offer discounted rates or credits to people willing to drive from a low-demand area to a higher-demand one. They already do something similar for snow emergencies.

Maybe that would lead to a higher rate. Maybe that would lead to lower profits. Maybe it simply wouldn't work anymore. But they never claimed that Car2go is not profitable as-is, and the city has legitimate interests here as well.
And, the taxi rule was put in place to ensure that there's at least some form of transportation afforded to everyone in every neighborhood. It was put in place long prior to all of the various modern alternatives we have now. Does it even apply to Lyft and Uber?
No, but that's a problem.
Not entirely buying the idea that North Minneapolis is being avoided intentionally by Uber drivers because of crime. I could hang out in Phillips or Ventura Village, two dense areas that are closer to downtown and closer to other high traffic areas, and just as dangerous as most of North, and probably get an Uber ride right away. Could probably also nab a taxi a lot easier too on one of the main streets. I'm guessing it has a lot more to do with the number of requests they get. You have to have both a smart phone and a credit card to get a ride, as opposed to taxis, which take cash and can be ordered with a land line, and I'm guessing smart phones and credit cards are less common among poorer North residents. The safer areas of North are far and low density and not close to much. Again, probably not a huge source of requests.

If the demand were there drivers would fill that need.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby twinkess » December 30th, 2015, 1:00 pm

Looks like Enterprise Car Share is done. I just got a refund of my annual fee and this message appears when I log in:

Hello Minneapolis Retail Members,

As of December 31, 2015, Enterprise CarShare will no longer be available in Minneapolis.

Please reach out to the local Enterprise branch at 612-824-4433 to service your transportation needs.

It has been a pleasure having you along for the ride.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Silophant » February 16th, 2016, 8:32 am

According to an email they sent me yesterday, there are now Car2Go spots at Terminal 2. There is a $7.50 convenience fee added to any trip starting or ending at the airport.

To make sure people pay that fee, the Parkspots at Fort Snelling Park and Ride and 46th St. Station are being removed.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby mattaudio » February 16th, 2016, 9:00 am

Not nice for people who live at Oaks Station Place.

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby Sacrelicio » February 16th, 2016, 9:20 am

Silophant wrote:According to an email they sent me yesterday, there are now Car2Go spots at Terminal 2. There is a $7.50 convenience fee added to any trip starting or ending at the airport.

To make sure people pay that fee, the Parkspots at Fort Snelling Park and Ride and 46th St. Station are being removed.
So it's like a self-driving airport taxi? Pretty big change to the model.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby HuskyGrad » February 17th, 2016, 10:54 am

mattaudio wrote:Not nice for people who live at Oaks Station Place.
:(

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby PhilmerPhil » February 17th, 2016, 11:32 am

People at Oaks can still use Car2go like the rest of us do. Look up nearby cars in the app and park on nearby streets.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby exiled_antipodean » February 17th, 2016, 11:41 am

Can't say many will find this convenient. Driving the xtra distance to Terminal 2 will cost more + the $7.50 charge, then the train back to Terminal 1 if you're at Terminal 1.

It's not at all hard to park close to 46th or 50th or VA stations, walk 100 yards to the train for no fee, and then get straight to Terminal 1.

I presume the $7.50 is mostly covering MSP imposed costs, but the extra trip miles goes to car2go.

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Re: Car Sharing / Rental (Car2Go, HourCar, etc.)

Postby twincitizen » February 17th, 2016, 3:49 pm

I suspect this will result in even more Cars2Go being parked around 38th, 46th, etc. Which is absolutely fine as long as people are also taking those cars and redistributing them. I have no idea how likely that is to balance itself out naturally, but my gut tells me that more people will use Car2Go+train going TO the airport than will for the reverse trip going back home.


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