Update on total overhaul and retooling of the World Carshare Consortium
Thanks for filling in the dots on this one Dave.
As you know the New Mobility Agenda has for a long time been a strong supporter of sharing, bikes as well as cars, streets and public spaces. The program update to which you refer below noted the very high growth of carsharing over the last two years, and from an already strong base (more than 600 in operation in 2006). It also reflects that the World Carshare Consortium was started as a cooperative international venture more than a decade ago, and we are proud to have been part of this significant shift (as you will see if you page over to http://recommendations.worldcarshare.com where those words come from some of the outstanding leaders in the field).
Our allegiance to bike sharing, whereas only dating back to 2006 as far as the organization of this World City Bike Collaborative program, and the considerable information and databases behind it, is I think a sign that we are just as strongly committed to the concept of shared bikes. And in any event I for one do not propose to make this into a beauty contest, which I think does not help given the difficulty of getting these things working and accepted in both cases.
My own original experiences in both go back to the late sixties at which time I thought that Luud Schimmelpennink, my friend, associate, and occasional partner, going all the way back to that ancient era, had got the wheels spinning in the right direction with his great White Bicycles. And only year or two later I also fell in love with the concept of carsharing when I visited what I think of as the first “modern” carsharing project in Montpellier France, the terrific and innovative ProcoTip project. Sure both of them ran into their full share of problems, but to my mind they did not FAIL. Rather they pioneered and led the way.
So carsharing, bikesharing, street-sharing, whatever. Let’s put our shoulders behind these great projects and do our bit to make them work. The world needs them and badly. And if tonight you raise your glass to Luud and all the others who have worked so hard, smart and long to turn this simple idea into a transformative reality, well I am sure that you will not be alone.
PS. KNOOGLE IT: Never heard of the White Bicycles, ProcoTip or for that matter to Luud’s almost parallel WitKar project). No problem: Click to http://www.knoogle.worldcarshare.com and pop them into the search box. Sapristi. There you are and now you know.
Your man Eric wrote: As but one example, back in 2006 our inventory of cities with carsharing logged in some six hundred, but today just two years later, and if we include the fast-growing campus and specific company/group carshare operations, it can be seen that we have doubled that number. That has to mean something.
Perhaps an even more dramatic effect might be in Bike Sharing - and related systems
Barely 5 years ago the germ of OV-Fiets was manually working on one site - there are now 160 sites with NS and clones elsewhere.
And how many bike share bikes have appeared since 2006? Clue - in 2007 the call for bike share 3-speed hub fitted bikes caused a major shortage world-wide in supply of these units. I don't recall such a problem with car sharing cars.....
Note also that in some US cities the demand for bike on transit (ie buses) went up over 100% between April and June/July
But one curious thing on UK TV channels . Until very recently , and possibly still appearing we have the property make-over shows and the property investment shows (Location Location Location etc) . However when it comes to a transport makeover, all they can come up with is taking away the subject(s) car(s) and forcing them to walk to the bus stop and wait for buses with no thought to what the contemporary car-light and car free households actually do. For a start they locate where most daily needs can be obtained within a 5 minute walk, and then with a catholic ethic use car share, car hire, taxis and cycling to fill in the gaps where appropriate, or get things delivered (and on the basis that if you want my business then accept my terms, most suppliers will realise that delivery without exhorbitant penalties will actually bring them the custom of the substantial % customers without the appropriate transport).