SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--City CarShare, a Bay Area nonprofit, will expand its carsharing network to underserved East Bay communities in collaboration with the Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) and the Bay Area Climate Collaborative (BACC). The program will deploy vehicles in Richmond, El Cerrito and Oakland, and includes electric vehicles, fuel-efficient hybrids, and a wheelchair accessible van. The program is partially funded through a $973,864 grant, awarded Wednesday, December 18 by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC).
The program, called CarShare4All, will bring the Bay Area’s most affordable and environmentally focused carsharing service to low and moderate income areas. “The ongoing support of the MTC has enabled City CarShare to provide the most diverse and greenest fleet available to underserved communities,” said Rick Hutchinson, CEO, City CarShare. “This award will help us and our partners provide electric vehicles, new solar-charging technology, and our AccessMobile (wheelchair van) program to neighborhoods that deserve a lot more attention than they’ve previously received.”
The Contra Costa Transportation Authority, the lead applicant for the grant, will serve as fiscal agent for the project. City CarShare will own and operate the network and BACC will provide deployment support.
City CarShare, the nation’s largest nonprofit carsharing organization, serves nearly 16,000 members in the Bay Area. Over 60% of its locations are in designated low/moderate income neighborhoods. Nearly 200 of its cars are within walking distance of major transit lines and over 50% of its carsharing fleet is battery-based (hybrid, plug-in electric hybrid and all battery electric). The CarShare4All program supports a common goal among City CarShare, the CCTA, and BACC, which is to expand green transportation choices to all constituencies.
"Carsharing is a very important part of our strategy to provide transportation options," said Kevin Romick, Chair of the Contra Costa Transportation Authority, "This project with City CarShare and the Bay Area Climate Collaborative provides critical links to and from public transit, which provides multi-modal travel choices for Contra Costa residents."
CarShare4All will also allow City CarShare to expand its CommunityShare program, which provides discounted carshare memberships to low and moderate income families, and its AccessMobile program, which provides wheelchair accessible vans to members. Additionally, CarShare4All will include equipment by Schneider Electric for charging electric vehicles, as the fleet will contain only plug-in electric vehicles or hybrids. An innovative solar-based EV charging infrastructure will be tested at one location, as well, that lowers deployment costs and enables vehicles to be “solar powered.” City CarShare will be the first carsharing organization to deploy and use this new and innovative “off the grid” technology. As a result, best practices will be developed and shared through this proposed project.
“We are very pleased to see carsharing expanded in El Cerrito,” said Melanie Mintz Interim Community Development Director, City of El Cerrito, “residents appreciate the existing carshare access at one BART station and having a new Pod near El Cerrito Del Norte station will be a big win.”
Carsharing enables individuals to reduce their dependence on private transportation. When fully deployed CarShare4All is projected to yield as much as 3 million lbs. of CO2 reduction per year.
“Carsharing is a vital strategy for lowering our carbon footprint and reducing transportation costs,” said BACC Executive Director Rafael Reyes, “we look forward to assisting City CarShare to bring expanded services to the region.”
About the City CarShare
City CarShare, the largest nonprofit carsharing organization in North America, is also the only nonprofit carsharing provider in the Bay Area. Launched in 2001, City CarShare’s mission is to reduce car ownership and usage, improve the environment, and support an enhanced quality of life for all in Bay Area communities. City CarShare offers convenient, affordable access to shared cars and promotes green mobility options beyond carsharing. City CarShare offers members rates that are 10%-50% lower than other providers, a subsidized low/moderate income program (CommunityShare), and the nation’s first wheelchair accessible carsharing program (AccessMobile). City CarShare also offers more plug-in electric vehicles than any other classic carsharing provider of multiple vehicle types. For more information please visit: www.citycarshare.org.
About the Bay Area Climate Collaborative
The Bay Area Climate Collaborative (BACC) is a public-private initiative of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group established by the Mayors of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland to accelerate the clean energy economy. BACC programs have committed 100 million lbs. of CO2 emissions reductions over the next decade. Major partners include Bank of America, PG&E, Environmental Defense Fund, industry partners including ChargePoint, and local governments representing over 70 percent of the Bay Area population. The BACC is driving electric vehicle innovation through co-facilitation of the EV Strategic Council, the executive forum driving the region’s vision to be the “EV Capital of the US”; co-managing the Experience Electric EV marketing campaign with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission; facilitation of 150 electric vehicles to municipal fleets; and development of Ready, Set, Charge, California! A Guide to EV-Ready Communities delivering key guidance on EV preparedness. For more information on the BACC, please visit: www.baclimate.org.
About the Contra Costa Transportation Authority
The Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) is a public agency responsible for maintaining and improving the county’s transportation system by planning, funding, and delivering critical transportation infrastructure projects and programs that connect our communities, foster a strong economy, increase sustainability, and safely and efficiently get people where they need to go. The Authority is also the county's designated Congestion Management Agency, responsible for putting programs in place to keep traffic levels manageable. More information is available at ccta.net.
About Schneider Electric
As a global specialist in energy management with operations in more than 100 countries, Schneider Electric offers integrated solutions across multiple market segments, including leadership positions in Utilities & Infrastructure, Industries & Machines Manufacturers, Non-residential Buildings, Data Centers & Networks and in Residential. Focused on making energy safe, reliable, efficient, productive and green, the company’s 150,000 plus employees achieved sales of 31 billion US dollars in 2013, through an active commitment to help individuals and organizations make the most of their energy. www.schneider-electric.com/us