A new car-sharing service is rolling into Dallas this month, and unlike its cousins Uber and Lyft, Zipcar is doing so with nary a controversy in tow. Zipcar, which rents out vehicles by the hour and the day, will launch a pilot program in downtown Dallas on September 23.
The app-based car-sharing service will park six vehicles in three City of Dallas parking lots: Pioneer Plaza, Oak Lawn Library and Lamar (which is under Woodall Rodgers Freeway).
Drivers gain access to Zipcars by swiping their membership card across the dashboard — no keys required. Zipcars are already available at University of Texas at Dallas, SMU and Dallas Love Field airport.
In a September 12 memo to Dallas City Council members, first assistant city manager Ryan Evans cited a recent urban study that showed one car-sharing vehicle replaced 32 privately owned cars. "Car-sharing can help reduce the number of vehicles in an urban area, while allowing people to access a car for occasional use," Evans said.
Zipcar memberships start at $50 a year, and rental fees range from $9 per hour to $69 per day. The cost includes gas, insurance and 180 miles worth of travel.