Mayor de Blasio Announces Expanded Access To Carshare From Harlem To Hollis

Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced that the City will dedicate 309 parking spots to carshare programs: the NYC DOT will dedicate 285 parking spaces.

The spaces are through the DOT NYC Carshare pilot for Zipcar and Enterprise CarShare vehicles on streets in select neighborhoods as well as in DOT municipal parking lots, while NYCHA will also start a new partnership with Zipcar, dedicating 24 parking spaces at certain public housing developments. Curbside regulations noting the exact locations of the NYC DOT Carshare two-year pilot are now posted in neighborhoods in four boroughs that were selected after an extensive community consultation process. Enterprise CarShare and Zipcar vehicles are expected to be available to rent from those designated spots starting on Monday, June 4. Both Enterprise CarShare and Zipcar will also be offering discounts to NYCHA residents citywide.

“For the first time ever, the City is setting aside dedicated parking spots to expand access to carshare programs,” said Mayor de Blasio. “For every vehicle in a carshare program, up to twenty households can forgo the need to own a car, fighting congestion and making our air cleaner. We’re also bringing more carshare options to NYCHA residents to help them get around, so we can continue building the fairest big city in America.”

Data has shown that one carshare vehicle can be shared by up to 70 individuals, and research evaluating these programs in other cities across the country shows that 5-20 private vehicles are sold, or never purchased, for every one carshare vehicle made available. For New York City, this could mean fewer cars competing for parking at the curb, and improved mobility for households that do not own their own car. The City is excited to evaluate how making carshare convenient and accessible to more New Yorkers improves the quality of life for car owners and non-car owners alike.

“Our carshare pilot will give New Yorkers a chance to try a new affordable, convenient transportation option, which we hope will also ease parking pressure at our curbs and reduce congestion,” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. “Under the leadership of the City Council, we have targeted two kinds of neighborhoods where we think the pilot could really have a positive effect. First, in transit-rich neighborhoods where cars are only driven occasionally, we think inexpensive and convenient carshare could encourage owners to sell their car or not buy a new one, thereby freeing up more parking for drivers who need it. And in less-transit dense neighborhoods, carshare could add a travel option for car-free households or those who may now find car ownership unaffordable. Either way, we encourage New Yorkers to give carshare a try and let us know what they think.”

“We are thrilled to partner with Zipcar on this opportunity to bridge transit deserts and provide better connected communities for our residents,” said NYCHA Executive Vice President for External Affairs David Pristin. “One of our NextGeneration NYCHA goals is to empower residents, helping them improve their quality of life. Through this discounted Zipcar membership and strategically placed Zipcar parking spots at our developments, residents will have more affordable options and new opportunities available to them.”

Carsharing is a service that gives members access to a vehicle for short-term use – usually by the hour or minute – at a cost that includes gas and insurance. Carshare companies participating in the DOT pilot offer round-trip service, allowing members to borrow cars from and return them to the same location. Under the pilot, DOT will work with round-trip service providers Zipcar and Enterprise CarShare to improve access to carshare and increase the mobility and financial benefits of the service for residents and the city as a whole.

The NYC DOT Carshare Pilot will bring carshare service to 230 on-street parking spaces in 14 neighborhoods citywide:

Bronx

  • Parkchester

Brooklyn

  • Boerum Hill
  • Brooklyn Heights
  • Cobble Hill – Carroll Gardens
  • East Williamsburg
  • Park Slope
  • Red Hook
  • Williamsburg

Queens

  • Eastern Rockaways
  • Jackson Heights
  • Jamaica

Manhattan

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  • East Harlem
  • Hamilton Heights
  • Morningside Heights

The pilot will also introduce carshare service using 55 dedicated parking spaces at 17 DOT municipal facilities in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens:

  • Bronx: Belmont Avenue; White Plains Road; Jerome & 190 Street
  • Brooklyn: Avenue M; Bensonhurst #1 & #2; Brighton Beach; Grant Avenue;
  • Sheepshead Bay #1 & #2
  • Queens: Broadway & 31 Street; Far Rockaway #2; Ditmars; Queens Village; Queens
  • Borough Hall; Steinway #2; Sunnyside

NYCHA has partnered with Zipcar to provide public housing residents the opportunity to join Zipcar with no fee for a 12-month period and an additional driving discount for vehicles located at NYCHA facilities. NYCHA’s Resident Engagement Department has done extensive outreach to Resident Associations to educate residents on the discount and promote the benefits of the more affordable transit option. In addition, IDNYC cardholders already have access to a complimentary, one-year membership to Zipcar, which includes a waived application fee, and 10 to 15 percent discounts on hourly driving rates Monday through Friday only.

Many NYCHA developments sit in less dense areas of the City and are effectively transit deserts. The lack of public transportation options limits resident opportunities and impacts potential job or quality of life possibilities for public housing residents. NYCHA has identified 24 parking spaces at developments with limited public transportation to place new Zipcar vehicles, providing broader access to the Zipcar program. These parking spaces were previously vacant and will not impact residents with NYCHA permits to park at their developments.

NYCHA Bronx ZipCar sites (2 spaces each):

  • East 152nd St-Courtland Ave
  • Davidson Houses
  • Marble Hill Houses
  • Randall Balcom Houses
  • Throggs Neck Addition

NYCHA Brooklyn ZipCar sites:

  • Belmont Sutter Houses (2 spaces)
  • Cypress Hills Houses (2 spaces)
  • Fiorentino Plaza (3 spaces)
  • Glenmore Plaza (3 spaces)
  • Marlboro Houses (2 spaces)
  • Pink Houses (2 spaces)

Research has shown that carshare has the potential to:

Lower household transportation costs by providing access to a car without the onerous costs of car ownership. A family that uses its car only a few times per month can save the thousands of dollars per year in costs incurred for car payments, maintenance, insurance, and parking tickets.

Shorten the search for parking by ensuring that carsharers always have a reserved space. Adding carshare spaces also helps reduce personal car ownership, as car owners who shed cars lead to fewer drivers competing for limited curb spaces.
Improve access to jobs, services, and recreation by making a car available when you need one.

Improve air quality because New Yorkers who use carshare drive less than those who own their own car. Research has shown that in some New York City neighborhoods, nearly half of drivers at any time are searching for parking. Less driving means cleaner air.

Mandated by Local Laws 47 and 50 of 2017, the DOT Carshare Pilot will expand transportation options for more New Yorkers by making carshare more geographically, physically, and financially accessible. To participate in this pilot, carshare companies are required to serve parts of the City where carshare is currently not available. Carshare companies must also provide a vehicle with professionally installed hand controls to any carshare member within 48 hours of that member’s request.

Carshare parking spaces will have new curb regulation signage to clearly designate spaces for a specific carshare company in addition to pedestrian-level signs to provide information about the pilot program. Carshare parking spaces are designated OTHERS-NO STANDING to ensure that the spaces remain available for residents using the carshare service. Following standard enforcement procedures, NYPD is authorized to ticket and tow any non-carshare vehicle illegally parked in carshare parking spaces.

“Car sharing takes more cars off the road then it brings on. That helps us clean our air and cut greenhouse gas emissions,” said Mark Chambers, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. “Part and parcel of building the fairest big city in America is making New York City the nation’s most sustainable big city as well.”

“Car-share services will help more New Yorkers access cars when they need to without the expense, the extra congestion, and the environmental impacts of full-time car ownership,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Pilot programs to reserve spaces for car-sharing on our streets and in our public parking facilities are forward-thinking steps toward a more sustainable future.”

“Our city’s streets have been overburdened by congestion and we must deploy the modern tools at our disposal to make life easier for commuters,” said Congressman Joe Crowley, Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. “Car-sharing is a wonderful solution to many of the issues that ail our city. It reduces our carbon footprint and increases the efficiency of our transportation system. I’m glad the city is encouraging residents to adapt to this new and exciting model of transportation!”

“With the serious and growing problem of traffic congestion and limited parking spaces spreading from Manhattan to the outer boroughs, I stand ready to support Mayor de Blasio and DOT’s efforts to deal with the situation, and hope this pilot program, over the course of its two-year experimental run, will prove worthy of making it permanent,” said State Senator Luis Sepulveda.

“The New York City Department of Transportation is driving New Yorkers in the right direction with the launch of its Carshare Pilot,” said State Senator James Sanders Jr. “Car sharing is the future, and this program will help protect our environment by lessening our carbon footprint on the road to happier, healthy lives for all.”

“I am thrilled to know that our Marble Hill NYCHA residents will now have access to two affordable ZipCars. With access to this car sharing program, Marble Hill residents will have more access to transportation and more accessibility to parking. Thank you City Hall and DOT for thinking about NYCHA when thinking of this program expansion,” said State Senator Marisol Alacantara.

“I am eager to see the outcome of the NYC DOT’s new Carsharing Pilot Program. Car sharing is an innovative way for drivers that don’t own cars to have access to vehicles when and where they need them. I thank the DOT for choosing East Harlem as one of the neighborhoods selected to participate in the pilot.” said Assembly Member Robert J. Rodriguez.

“To solve our city’s congestion crisis, we need to give New Yorkers as many alternatives as possible to owning private cars. Conveniently located car share programs do just that. I am thrilled that residents of my district will now have an easy option for occasional car use without needing to bear the cost and hassle of owning their own vehicle,” said Council Member Mark Levine.

“Launching this car share pilot takes us a step closer to the future of transportation and a more car free city. We should be constantly working to find ways in which everyone can move from point A to point B efficiently, safely and in an environmentally friendly way. Car share does just that. It offers a new transportation option in places where there are few and encourages New Yorkers to move away from car ownership which can, in turn, reduce our greenhouse gas emissions,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, chair of the Committee on Transportation.

“The Rockaway Peninsula needs as many transportation options as we can get, including innovative programs such as carsharing,” said Council Member Donovan Richards. “While we wait for better A train service, this pilot will open up options for residents who rely on public transportation to reach jobs, healthcare and other essential services throughout the city. I’d like to thank DOT Commissioner Trottenberg for prioritizing my district in this plan and Zipcar for committing cars to the Rockaways.”

“At Zipcar, we’re committed to making cities better places to live and that starts with increasing access to smart mobility solutions that reduce reliance on personal cars,” said Tracey Zhen, Zipcar President. “Thanks to the support of Mayor de Blasio, Commissioner Trottenberg and Interim Chair Brezenoff, we will be able to provide more New Yorkers with access to ‘wheels when they want them,’ both in neighborhoods currently served by Zipcar as well as new areas where Zipcar will launch for the first time.”

“Carsharing has proven to be an affordable, flexible and convenient alternative to owning and maintaining a vehicle, especially in large urban areas like New York,” said Paul Metz, Group Manager for Enterprise CarShare. “This partnership allows us to operate as a strategic extension of the New York Department of Transportation’s multi-modal plan. So we’re looking forward to providing local residents more sustainable options, whenever and wherever they’re needed, all the while helping to reduce the number of cars overall on the road.”

Over the course of the pilot, DOT will conduct a rigorous evaluation and may be willing to entertain expansion of the pilot by current participants or future partners. In the process of determining the benefits to expanded carshare, NYC DOT will issue annual reports about the pilot and its impact, as required by local law. The evaluation results will inform the agency’s long-term approach to carshare.

NYC DOT worked with community stakeholders to select on-street carshare pilot zones and carshare parking space locations. New Yorkers suggested locations where they thought carshare would – or wouldn’t – be a good idea through on online feedback maps, on-street outreach events, conversations with elected officials, and during community board meetings. Carshare parking space locations were tailored by community feedback, including more than 550 map comments and nearly 1,000 in-person interactions with DOT Street Ambassadors throughout the on-street carshare pilot zones, to help inform the siting process.

The NYC DOT Carshare Pilot is part of DOT’s efforts to find long term, sustainable solutions to New York City’s transportation needs and improve accessibility and mobility across New York City. For more information about the pilot please visit nycdotcarshare.info.

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