City Council OKs measure to expand existing car-sharing program in Seattle
SEATTLE -- The Seattle City Council unanimously approved legislation to expand the existing car-sharing program to allow up to three additional companies to join Car2Go in providing services.
"Public support for this program has been phenomenal. I'm excited to expand car sharing city-wide to bring the service to all residents," said Councilman Tom Rasmussen, the legislation's sponsor.
"Car sharing" is a membership-based service that allows qualified drivers to temporarily use any vehicles available in a fleet for a per-use fee. Since a car sharing pilot program was created in early 2013 with the Car2Go company, 500 vehicles have served over 59,000 members, the City Council said.
It said two companies have expressed interest in competing in the Seattle market. The legislation delivered by Mayor Ed Murray allows up to three new companies to provide service, with up to 500 vehicles each (or 750 vehicles if the companies' geographic service boundaries include the whole city).
All operators will be required to provide city-wide service within 2 years of receiving their first permit.
Murray said, "This is another step in making Seattle a more livable and interconnected city for those who don’t own vehicles."