Austin to launch car share program

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by STEVE ALBERTS / KVUE News

kvue.com

Posted on November 13, 2009 at 7:10 PM

The City of Austin will soon become the first city in North America to begin a car share pilot program.

City employees will drive fuel efficient Smart Cars in an effort to save fuel and reduce traffic congestion.

The Smart Cars are parked in designated parking spots in downtown Austin.

City workers will drive them around downtown Austin on city business beginning Tuesday.

Smart Car supplier Car2Go will provide more than 200 Smart Cars to the city for free.

The vehicles seat two and get about 36 miles a gallon.

“The first reason we look at it is to see if we can reduce some of the fleet cost and environmental impacts,” said Karla Villalon, Austin Transportation Dept.  “Second we’d also like to introduce to the city to the community a large scale car sharing program.”

The pilot program will last six months. If all runs smoothly, Car2Go hopes to open it up to the public and business community.

City leaders are hopeful the program will save the city money and reduce traffic.

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