Is Lansing ready for a Zip Car service?

edited November 2006 in Lansing
I have started researching the Zip Car, car sharing model, and what it might take to bring it here. I can think of two places that a Zip Car station might be used and embraced...... One at Motorwheel/Prudden Place, and a second downtown between Arbaugh, Stadium, and Abrams.

Daimler Chrysler is launching the Smart Car in the US, at least in wider distribution.

Parking is an issue for downtown, and I don't think public transit can really solve the problem. Zip Car claims that for every shared car eliminates 20.

Its an idea I'm exploring.


  • edited November 2006
    Where else in this country has this been tried? Americans already have enough stigma of public transit, but I'd think they'd have an even more poor opinion of a car share if I'm understanding this correctly. Perhaps I don't understand this? Increasing the popularity of mass tranist with things like the Entertainment Express seem to be a better use of effort, but, I guess if a private party wanted to do it that would be all right.
  • San Fran, Chicago, Ann Arbor, New York, Boston, all very large places, with Ann Arbor being the smallest.

    It looks pretty cool. Public transit shortcomings could be picked up by the zip car. Ann Arbor has an Excape as one of its available zip cars, which you can rent to haul back something from Home Depot, which cata can never fill that gap. It appears to be a very cool concept, but I'm curious as to whether it would be embraced here, or not. I think Cooley students would embrace it, and maybe some of the other urban dwellers, but I'm not sure how much of a larger appeal it may have.
  • It seems like it would be a very small demographic to pool, but maybe you could make it work. I'd imagine this would make since in cities decidedly more dense than Lansing. Even most folks at MotorWheels own their own cars. I could see this working in places like East Lansing, but Cooley seems like a small market for this (i.e. just 2,000 students at Cooley, and that's only considering that everyone of them don't own a car which most do).
  • I put it out there to see what response would be. So many, do own cars, but I sometimes wonder how many of them really need to own a car. For me personally, public transit, just doesn't work, but that has more to do with my field of work. A zipcar could work, but I would have to make sure that it was available when I needed it, sometimes at short notice, but I think it could fly. I have shot some emails off to a few people to try to gauge response.
  • There seems to be some interest locally on this. I think we may be able to make a decent pitch at this. Just a matter of what Zipcar will want or need for a demographics, but I think that most of the local players necessary to make this fly, would lend their support.
  • It's definately worth a try, I think you should start of with a small "pilot program." When you get it going try to at least get some coverage in the City Pulse, if not the LSJ or local news. I think it may work, but starting off small will minimize your risk.
  • It corporate owned and not a franchise, so it may take some convincing, and we may need to put together a compelling package, but hey, this is smaller towns bring in big city amenities. Its not always simply sitting and waiting for someone to discover Lansing.
This discussion has been closed.