Thursday, December 11, 2008

City of Atlanta Joins with Zipcar to Promote Car-Sharing and Transportation Alternatives for City Employees

/PRNewswire/ -- Zipcar, the world's largest provider of cars on demand by the hour or day, today announced a partnership with the City of Atlanta to provide car-sharing memberships to City of Atlanta employees. The company also announced that Midtown Transportation Solutions (MTS) and the Downtown Transportation Management Association (DTMA) have teamed up with Zipcar and will pay application fees for Atlanta-based companies or organizations that join Zipcar before the end of the year.

The two partnerships are part of overall efforts to change commuting behaviors. By providing Zipcar memberships to Atlanta employees, more people will be able to use public transit for their commute and have access to Zipcar during their workday should they need a car.

This City of Atlanta partnership is possible thanks to a grant from the Kendeda Foundation, which will cover the $25 application fee for City of Atlanta employees. Once members, employees will have weekday access to Zipcars at reduced business rates, $8.25 per hour; $49 from 7am to 7pm or $60 for a 24-hour period.

"I encourage City employees to take full advantage of this partnership with Zipcar," said Mayor Shirley Franklin, who helped launch car sharing in Atlanta in September of 2006. "This program offers employees an alternative means of transportation while providing convenience and flexibility in using the public transit system."

Mandy Schmitt, Director of Sustainability for the City of Atlanta, a long-time member of Zipcar, and a champion behind this partnership, proudly acknowledges that, "This partnership gives employees an alternative to driving alone to work while promoting transit, biking, walking, carpooling, and vanpooling. They then have access to Zipcar at reduced rates if / when they need a car for personal use during the day. As a bonus, employees that use alternative forms of transportation can log their commutes online for Commuter Rewards offered through the Clean Air Campaign."

Businesses looking to join Zipcar and have their application fee covered by the Midtown Transportation Solutions (MTS) and the Downtown Transportation Management Association (DTMA) visit to contact the local Atlanta office for more information.

"Zipcar, combined with alternative commute modes, provides a viable and environmentally-friendly transportation option for all Atlanta residents, while still giving them access to a vehicle when the need arises," said Liz Wattenberg, General Manager, Zipcar Atlanta. "We applaud the City of Atlanta, MTS, and DTMA for taking an active lead in reducing SOV commuter trips through car sharing, and look forward to working together to reduce congestion and improve our air quality."

The City of Atlanta, along with the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transportation Authority (MARTA), Georgia Regional Transportation Authority (GRTA) and the Midtown and Downtown Transportation Management Associations, join a number of government and transportation agencies across the country that have partnered with Zipcar, including the City of Philadelphia, Arlington County, District Department of Transportation, Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority, New Jersey Transit and Washington Area Metro Transit Authority.

Since September 2006, Atlanta's fleet of shared vehicles has grown to nearly 70 automobiles comprised of more than 20 makes and models including pickup trucks, convertibles and hybrids in key areas of Atlanta. There are currently over a quarter million Zipcar members sharing 5,500 Zipcars worldwide.

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