August 31, 2009

UTA, Utah campus partner with car sharing program

U Car Share has partnered with the Utah Transit Authority, the City of Salt Lake and the University of Utah by launching the alternative to vehicle ownership in Salt Lake City.

U Car Share allows members access to cars 24/7, thus eliminating the need to own a car or bring one to campus during the school year. Members pay only for what they use, in one low hourly rate starting at $4.95 per hour (plus $0.59 per mile). The company takes care of fuel, insurance and maintenance costs. Hourly rates that include 180 miles free per reservation range from $8.00-$12.00 per hour, depending on the vehicle.

Anyone 18 years or older with at least two years of driving experience may qualify to become a member. U Car Share encourages students at local universities and colleges to consider using car sharing instead of bringing a car to campus. With many locations around town, the car service is a convenient alternative that can save thousands of dollars vs. owning a car and having to deal with parking, insurance, fuel and maintenance.

Car sharing meets the needs of any individual who needs a car occasionally, while being sensitive to the surrounding community and environment. Car sharing reduces the demand for parking and results in greater sustainability while enabling individuals to retain their mobility.

U Car Share vehicles have been positioned for easy access to the local community, and will be available at Ogden Transit Center, Lake Central Station, Ballpark, Millcreek, Meadowbrook, Murray Central and Sandy Civic Center, beginning August 18, 2009.

U Car Share will be providing 12 EPA SmartWay certified vehicles: one Ford F-150s, one Ford Escape Hybrid, four Ford Focuses, four Toyota Yarises and two Toyota Priuses. The vehicles will be parked conveniently at each rail location. Sixteen additional vehicles will be arriving and soon will be placed throughout Salt Lake City and the University of Utah.

Members will be able to access the vehicle with a U Car Share membership card. They will be able to log on to ucarshare.com at any time and reserve any vehicle of their choice on the U Car Share network. Members can reserve cars for as little as an hour at any time of day. Gas and insurance are all included in one low hourly rate starting at $4.95 per hour ($0.59 per mile). Daily and hourly rates with included miles are available, as well.

U-Haul will be hosting a grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony to launch U Car Share on Tuesday, August 18, 2009 at 10 a.m. at the Salt Lake Central Station, 330 South 600 West.

"U Car Share is the perfect extension of our business model. U-Haul has been in the truck-sharing business for more than 61 years," exclaimed Michael Kemp, president, U-Haul Company of Utah. "Helping to create greater sustainability through shared-use vehicles is just another way of showing our commitment to our community."

For a limited time, membership is free for all residents, students, faculty and staff (a $25 value). Log on to ucarshare.com today and enter promotion code SLC82009 when signing up. (This promo code will expire on October 30, 2009.)

"Car sharing is an innovative transportation concept that is catching on across the country, and UTA is excited to partner with U Car Share to bring car sharing to the Wasatch Front," said John Inglish, UTA general manager. "By providing U Car Share vehicles in many of our TRAX and FrontRunner stations, people will have more flexible and efficient transportation options and greater access to public transit."

Research shows that car sharing is great for the environment. Every shared car on the road can replace up to 15 personally owned vehicles. This means that fewer cars will need to be manufactured, fewer cars will be on the road and the community's carbon footprint will be reduced. Car sharing is fast becoming a critical element of the transportation network in many cities and universities, enabling residents, students and businesses to get rid of their cars while still meeting their transportation needs.

U Car Share is committed to the community and will work with the Utah Transit Authority to see that the program is successful. U Car Share is very excited to be in Salt Lake City and looks forward to the growth of car sharing.

U Car Share is also available in: Portland, Maine; Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Va.; Madison, Wis.; Berkeley, Calif., Portland, Ore. and Eugene, Ore.

U Car Share vehicles soon will be available at Regis College, Weston, Mass.

For more information about U Car Share, log on to ucarshare.com or call 1-877-990-8227.

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