Zipcar Launches in Champaign, Urbana and the University of Illinois
Jan 13, 2008
Cambridge, MA (January 13, 2008) —Zipcar, the world's largest provider of cars on demand by the hour or day, has partnered with the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District (CUMTD), the cities of Champaign and Urbana, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to bring car sharing to the community as an environmentally-friendly transportation alternative. The partnership continues the cities' and university's commitment to invest in sustainable solutions and marks Zipcar's entry into the area, bringing its operations to more than 50 cities, including London, England, and 28 North American states and provinces.
Beginning today, six self-service Zipcars - three Mazda 3s, a Toyota Prius, a Toyota Matrix and a Scion xD - will be available for use 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All UI students, faculty and staff 18 + and local residents 21 + can join the service, with gas, maintenance, insurance and reserved parking included in low hourly and daily rates. The cars will be located in Champaign, Urbana and on the Illinois campus.
Zipcar was selected as the community's car sharing partner based on its superior technology and operations, membership experience and track record of providing cities and universities with a proven, cost effective, and environmentally-friendly transportation solution.
"We are happy to offer these fuel efficient cars available to reserve by the hour or day for students who need to make an occasional trip to the grocery store or get off campus for a study break once in a while," said Morgan Johnston, Transportation Demand Management Coordinator for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. "The Zipcar program allows our students to leave the family car back home, yet still be able to get around town or away for a weekend. It also gives our employees an opportunity to carpool with others from their home neighborhood or to take advantage of the local MTD, yet still get away from work during the day for an appointment, a lunch, or just to run some errands, by using a Zipcar."
The CUMTD is excited to bring this additional mobility choice to the community as the program is in accord with its continuing mission to lead the way to greater mobility and promote excellence in transportation. With the addition of the Zipcar program, residents have a number of excellent alternatives to get to their destinations.
The cities of Champaign and Urbana are delighted about the ability to offer car-sharing in the communities because it contributes to their established goal of offering transportation choice in the Downtowns and Campustown while reducing reliance on the automobile.
The benefits of having a more balanced transportation system in these areas are less congestion, more available parking, and a safer pedestrian environment. For the campus area, the introduction of Zipcar gives university students a reasonable alternative to bringing a car to campus. For the downtowns, it gives residents and employees further flexibility for getting around town.
For university students who cannot or do not want to bring a privately-owned car to school, Zipcar provides the freedom to travel off campus to attend interviews, run errands, or take a weekend trip. Zipcar also eliminates hundreds of dollars in monthly transportation costs, saving members an average of $600/month or $7,200/year when compared with car ownership - money that can be put toward other more relevant expenses such as tuition and housing.
University of Illinois faculty, staff, and students 18+ can now join Zipcar for $35 and will gain access to Champaign, Urbana and campus Zipcars for $8 per hour or $66 per day. Local Champaign and Urbana residents ages 21+ can also join for $75 ($25 one-time application fee and $50 annual fee). As a special promotion, the university community will receive $35 in driving credit when they sign up, and local Champaign and Urbana residents will receive $50 in driving credit. All members 21+ will have access to Zipcar's network of more than 5,500 vehicles throughout the UK and North America.
Those interested in learning more about Zipcar at Champaign and Urbana or at the University of Illinois can visit www.zipcar.com/cu and www.zipcar.com/uillinois, respectively, for more information about membership and hourly rates.
Zipcar is the world's leading car-sharing service with more than 250,000 members and 5,500 vehicles in urban areas and college campuses throughout 28 North American states and provinces as well as in London, England. As a leader in urban transportation, Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to savvy city residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car in the city. In November 2007, Zipcar announced a merger with Washington D.C. based Flexcar, immediately expanding operations to more than 50 cities, and enabling future growth into new markets across the United States, Canada, and Europe. For more information, visit www.zipcar.com.