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Friday, 2 February 2018

car2go may end operations in Toronto after shock city council vote


The car sharing program Car2go is evaluating whether it will continue to operate in the city of Toronto after your City Councillors vote 30-2 against free-float carshare.

Despite media reports last week in the CBC that there was optimism that Toronto city council would approve the project. Many are quite surprised by this result. Even myself I can remember how traffic congestion was a key issue for John Tory when he became Mayor. Here I am pictured in the Mayors office talking about key transit issues back in 2015 shortly after John Tory became Mayor. Getting Toronto again was a big part of the discussion.

No wonder I have such a strong disdain for politics.

Despite overwhelming respected third-party research how it is proven that free-float carshare effectively reduces road congestion while improving urban air quality. The city of Toronto is not in favour, along with other benefits that include:
  • reduced vehicle ownership rates
  • reduced household transportation costs
  • reduced vehicle kilometres traveled
  • reduced greenhouse gases and emissions
  • increase in walking, cycling, and transit use
While I tip my hat to City Councillors @mary_margaret32 and @norm for being the only 2 to show support. I can't help but ask, does the city of Toronto really want to reduce congestion in the city? Is this really what we expect of our City Councillors and why are they so focused on giving preferential treatment to car owners, other major Canadian and U.S. cities are increasing their support for carshare. In a nutshell, Toronto is being left behind. Please leave your comments below.

Here is an email I received from Paul Delong on the vote....


As we emailed you about on January 25th, Toronto City Council was supposed to vote on a carshare pilot project that would have better supported the service you use to move through your life, mainly through the creation of universal parking permits for carsharing vehicles.

The City’s Transportation Services department strongly supported the launch of the free-float pilot, stating that carshare offers “a number of benefits to individuals, businesses, the environment, the community, and the transportation network, including: reduced vehicle ownership rates; reduced household transportation costs; reduced vehicle kilometres travelled; reduced greenhouse gases and emissions; and an increase in walking, cycling, and transit use.”

Respected third-party research has proven beyond a doubt that free-float carshare effectively reduces road congestion while improving urban air quality.

Despite the available and accepted proof illustrating the benefits of free-float carshare, plus the recommendation from Transportation Services that City Council vote to establish a free-float carshare pilot, last night City Council voted 30-2 to once again delay discussion to establish Toronto’s first free-float carshare pilot and effectively send the entire process back to bureaucratic square one.

This is a clear sign that your City Councillors lack the courage to support free-float carshare (30-2 vote!). It also clearly signals that they care more about Torontonians who own their own cars than Torontonians who have either shed or delayed purchasing a car because of a service like car2go – people like you who are part of the solution, not the problem.

Today, car2go operates 350 shared vehicles in Toronto – a city with well over one million privately owned cars. This means – at most – the car2go fleet makes up .00035% of all the cars on the road in Toronto. Over 75,000 Torontonians, like you, depend on those 350 cars to move around the city several times a day, unlike the million-plus privately owned cars which sit unused 95% of the time. In fact, each car2go vehicle is proven to remove up to 11 other cars from the road. City’s Council’s refusal to take a serious approach to a free-float carshare policy will eventually force more Torontonians to buy their own cars. And that will only make the problem worse.

While the Toronto City Council seems focused on giving preferential treatment to car owners, other major Canadian and U.S. cities are increasing their support for carshare. In a nutshell, Toronto is being left behind.

Given the City of Toronto’s consistent unwillingness to establish this critical free-float carshare policy, we are forced to re-examine our operations moving forward in Toronto. This may mean changes to the way you currently use car2go.

We promise to update you as soon as we complete our review. If we do decide to make changes, we will let you know in-advance so you can plan accordingly.

As always, we appreciate your membership and had hoped to share better news with you.
The Toronto Twitter community was also surprised by the result:


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