November 9, 2009 — The University of Virginia and Zipcar, the world's largest car-sharing service, will launch Zipcar's program on U.Va.'s Grounds on Nov. 17.
The program is designed to decrease the number of vehicles on Grounds and help reduce parking demand and associated congestion. A key component to the University's sustainability commitment, Zipcar offers faculty, staff and students a convenient, economical and environmentally responsible alternative to owning a car.
"Investing in alternative transportation and reducing the number of cars on campus are key tenets of our overall approach to sustainability," said Rebecca White, U.Va.'s director of parking and transportation.
Six self-service Zipcars – three hybrid Honda Insights and three fuel-efficient Honda Civics – will be available for use 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The cars will be in reserved parking spaces and will be available to all faculty, staff and students aged 18 and over starting Nov. 17. Gas, insurance, 180 free miles, parking in the reserved spot and roadside assistance are included in the hourly and daily rates. More cars will be added as the service grows.
Individuals can join Zipcar for a $35 annual fee and drive for $8 per hour or $66 per day weekdays and $9 per hour or $72 per day on weekends. Students will receive $35 in free driving credit as part of the program. Faculty and staff enrolled in U.Va.'s Cavpool program will receive $15 in free driving credit as an added reward for choosing to carpool. The University is also encouraging its departments to use Zipcars for business travel.
Charlottesville residents, age 21 and older, will be able to join for $75. All members 21 and over will have access to Zipcar's network of more than 6,500 vehicles throughout North America and the United Kingdom.
U.Va. is a state leader in sustainability efforts, with an aggressive recycling program, extensive initiatives to reduce electrical and water use on Grounds, use of biofuels, a pilot composting project, active green building standards and programs to promote use of public transportation and consumption of local foods.
"Zipcar is a perfect solution for universities, given that most people who live and work on campus don't need a car full time," Matthew Malloy, vice president of Global University Operations for Zipcar, said. More than 50 percent of Zipcar members report either selling a car or opting not to buy one.
U.Va. is among more than 140 colleges and universities that have partnered with Zipcar, including the University of Michigan, Harvard University, the University of North Carolina, Duke University, Dartmouth College, Yale University, Brown University and Old Dominion University.
Information, including how to learn more and join Zipcar, is at www.zipcar.com/uva.
Zipcar is the world's leading car-sharing service, with 325,000 members and 6,500 vehicles in urban areas and college campuses throughout 28 North American states and provinces as well as in London, England. Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day. More information is available at www.zipcar.com.
About the University of Virginia
The University of Virginia is a premier educational institution with a strong commitment to the environment. U.Va. has received many awards for its sustainability programs, including its recycling operation and innovative stormwater management practices.