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Updated 2:00 PM November 8, 2006
 

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Car sharing pulls onto campus

Passenger vehicles that can be used to drive across campus for a meeting, to a doctor's appointment or to visit out-of-state family now are available on the Ann Arbor campus. Parking and Transportation Services has partnered with Zipcar, a North American car-sharing company, to provide six vehicles for University faculty, staff and students—as well as community residents—to access for an hour or a day for personal use or University business.
Cars such as this will be available to registered Zipcar users. (Courtesy Facilities and Operations)

Prospective drivers, who must be 21 or older, can complete a one-page, online application to join Zipcar. For U-M community members, the annual fee is discounted to $30. Local residents can join for $75 ($50 annual fee plus a one-time $25 application fee). Members have access to U-M Zipcars for $8 per hour or a maximum of $60 per day. The cost of the vehicle, maintenance, insurance and even gas is covered by Zipcar.

"We already have a number of transportation demand management (TDM) tools in place at U-M, including free bus service, subsidized vanpools and low-cost parking options," says Dave Miller, PTS executive director. "Zipcar is one more tool we've added to our TDM toolkit."

Business use can be expensed to University purchasing cards with the approval of the individual's PCard administrator, while personal use can be funded from personal credit or debit cards. While multiple members in a department can expense their business use to one account, each driver must become a member of Zipcar. Reservations can be made on-line five minutes or weeks in advance.

The six U-M cars have reserved parking spaces in one of three campus parking lots—NC60 off Bonisteel Boulevard near Beal Avenue and the Lurie Engineering Center, M27 at the corner of Ann Street and Zina Pitcher Place next to the new Ann Street parking structure, and S5 off Monroe Street near State Street and the new Weill Hall.

The U-M partnership marks Zipcar's entry into this state, extending its network to 13 states and provinces. Zipcar members may reserve any of the company's 2,000 vehicles, including those at 34 colleges and universities.

"We're excited about this partnership and hope to see the demand for car sharing exceed the initial fleet of six vehicles," Miller says. "If the demand is there, we will grow the fleet."

For more information about Zipcar on campus, visit www.pts.umich.edu.

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