Car-pooling / Car Sharing Systems - An interactive ITS Handbook for

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Car-pooling / Car Sharing Systems - An interactive ITS Handbook for
Carpooling and Carsharing Schemes
Index
Purpose
Description
Relevance for Large Scale Events
Options
Technologies
Impacts
Integration potential
Implementation
Best Cases and Examples
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Purpose
Carpooling or Urban Lift-sharing Services is the sharing of car journeys so that more than one person
travels in a car. The car is usually owned by the driver itself, who gives a lift to other passengers he/she may
know or not. They are thus matching services that bring people together who are travelling in the same
direction, aiming to encourage individuals to share private vehicles for particular journeys. They use
advanced technologies (e.g. matching software, the internet and optional call centres) for trip matching,
increasing the potential to reach the necessary critical mass of users, targeting as a main group commuters
in urban agglomerations and the surrounding regions, but also improving mobility options for other trip
purposes and areas.
By having more people using one vehicle, carpooling reduces each person's travel costs such as fuel costs,
tolls, and the stress of driving. Carpooling is also seen as a more environmentally friendly and sustainable
way to travel as sharing journeys reduces carbon emissions, traffic congestion on the roads, and the need
for parking spaces. Authorities often encourage carpooling, especially to drive in highly congested roads or
during high pollution periods, providing incentives such as High Occupant Vehicles lanes and preferred/free
parking spaces.
Carsharing (car club in the UK) is slightly different since it refers to short-term automobile rental services
intended to substitute for private vehicle ownership and making an affordable and occasional use of a
vehicle: several users share the access to a car fleet, which is owned and managed by a service provider.
Carsharing can provide numerous transportation, land use, environmental, and social benefits helping to
reduce congestion and pollution. The first direct effect is that the use of shared cars directly reduces
demand for parking spaces, which can be very valuable in dense urban areas. A secondary effect is due to
the fact that only a certain number of cars can be in use at any one time then reducing traffic congestion at
peak hours. Since the system provide the direct metering of costs provides a cost incentive to drive less.
With owned automobiles many expenses are hidden and thus not related to how much the car is driven
(such as purchase cost, insurance, taxes and maintenance). Usually carsharing users change their modal
shift in favour of public transport and walking.
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Description
Carpooling drivers and passengers offer and search for journeys through one of the several mediums
available. After finding a match they contact each other to arrange any details for the journey(s). The
arrangements for carpooling is the critical phase of the system and can be made through many different
mediums, including:
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Public websites
Closed website schemes
Carpooling software
Manned carpooling agencies
Pick-up points (not pre-arranged)
The increasing diffusion of internet, smart phones and social networks are giving new chances to
carpoolingschemes.
Carsharing users can book a car for a time slot, and then return the car to car-parking (usually the same),
making it available for the next user. Users are members of the club (usually paying an annual subscription)
and pay an all-inclusive fee for the use of the car (usually both time and mileage based): on average the
cost-effectiveness for a carsharing user is set at around 10.000 km; below this threshold carsharing is more
convenient than owning a car.
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Relevance for Large Scale Events
The relevance for large events scale is still unknown, since carpooling and carsharing schemes are quite
new compared to other transport means.
It is by the way true that since carpooling and carsharing support the day by day mobility, reducing
congestion; this would be of great help during a large event, when all the mobility systems are exploited at
their maximum.
While carsharing is mostly aiming to reduce the number of cars parked and in the long terms to modify the
modal split towards more sustainable transport means, e.g. public transport and walking, the aim of
carpooling is to improve the performance of the street network, improving the total person throughput of
the infrastructure and the travel time reliability at the same time. This could be relevant during a large
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event, where often lanes are reserved for the “games family” transportation, and the space for the usual
users is reduced: in that case a reliable and well implemented carpooling scheme could be of great benefit
for the mobility during the games: reduced number of cars on the road (without reducing the number of
actual car users) and thereby reduced congestion means increased accessibility under consideration of
transport cost, location and transport safety as well as reduced energy consumption and emission of air
pollutants from single occupancy vehicles.
At the same time, a carpooling scheme could help users save on gas and parking, increase mobility choices
in areas that are not well served by public transport, improve quality of life for commuters through less
stress (passengers) and in some cases reserved parking, in summary reducing the need for a private car.
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Options
Carsharing and carpooling organisations can be public, cooperative or private, according to the local
characteristics.
While differing markedly in their objectives, size, business models, levels of ambition, technology and
target markets, these programs do share many features. The more established operations usually require a
check of past driving records and a monthly or annual fee in order to become a member. The cost and
maximum time a car may be used also varies.
To make a reservation, one can either make a reservation online, by phone, or by text messages depending
on the company's flexibility. Then the company usually asks all the necessary information such as:
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What time will the car be needed?
How long will the car be in use?
Where would you like to pick up the car?
What type of car is preferred?
There is a higher chance of availability the earlier the reservation is. If a reservation is cancelled however,
one may still be charged.
Once the reservations are completed and confirmed, the car will then be delivered at the time and place
scheduled. There will be a small card reader mounted on the windshield. Once the customer places their
membership card on the reader, it will use what is called blink technology to activate the time and unlock
the car. The reader will not work until it is time for that specific reservation. The keys can then be found
somewhere inside the car. Depending on the company, the customer may be provided with a key to a lock
box that contains the ignition key itself.
Although members are often responsible for cleaning the car and filling up the tank when low, the car
sharing company is generally responsible for the long-term maintenance of the vehicles. Members have to
make sure that when they are finished, the car is ready for the next user to move on.
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Technologies
The technology of carsharing evolved enormously, from first simple manual systems using key boxes and
log books to increasingly complex computer-based systems (e.g. partially automated and fully automated
systems) with supporting software packages that handle a growing array of back office functions. Most
modern systems relies on complex on-board units, smart cards, RFID, GPS, GSM network, plus back office
software. By the way it worth noting that without the implementation of well-developed Car-Sharing
technology, the success of modern Car-Sharing systems would be unthinkable. It is what guarantees the
dependability and simplicity of the service for users and operators.
Every modern Car-Sharing system these days has both a staffed 24-hour telephone centre to take customer
bookings (and other wishes and complaints) and an automated Internet portal through which they offer
those same services. There are almost always at least two methods available for customers to make
reservations.
The technologies used in carpooling services are mainly related to the arrangement phase (offer and
search): the use of websites it almost mandatory nowadays, and in the last few years smartphones with
access to the internet are becoming used to arrange the trip.
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Impacts
The potential impacts of carpooling is a direct reduction of congestion and pollution at urban level.
Experience indicates that ridesharing programs typically attract 5-15% of commute trips if they offer only
information and encouragement, and 10-30% if they also offer financial incentives such as parking cash out
or vanpool subsidies
Carpooling
CRITERION
TRAFFIC
EFFICIENCY
IMPACT
LEVEL
***
PT EFFICIENCY
**
AIR POLLUTION
**
Objective
Congestion Reduction
Road & Parking Savings
Consumer Savings
Transport Choice
Road Safety
Environmental
Protection
Efficient Land Use
COMMENTS
MEASURED
IMPACTS*
Carpooling schemes can reduces peakperiod private cars trips. A great potential
can be identified for trips to work due to
the average low occupancy rate and the
high number of simultaneous trips.
Potential improvements in public transport
efficiency can be associated with the
reduction in congestion along specific
routes.
Air pollution decrease is due to fewer cars
on the streets resulting in a reduction of
vehicle-km travelled.
[*, ** or *** indicate the strength of the impact]
Rating
3
3
3
3
2
2
Comments
Reduces peak-period automobile travel.
Reduces peak-period automobile travel.
Provides consumer savings.
Increases travel choice.
Reduces vehicle mileage, but increases vehicle occupancy, so
crashes that do occur may have more casualties.
Reduces automobile travel.
-1
May encourage longer-distance commutes and urban
sprawl.
Community Liveability
2
Reduces automobile trips.
Rating from 3 (very beneficial) to –3 (very harmful). A 0 indicates no impact or mixed impacts
Carsharing
Typical impacts of car sharing are lower car-mileage travelled per customer after joining the service (with
more use of publictransport, rail and bike), downsizing of cars (i.e. more appropriate cars for purpose of
journey) and a direct reduction in pollutant emissions and greenhouse gasses due to better cars available
(newer and better maintained vehicles, higher emission standard).
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CRITERION
TRAFFIC
EFFICIENCY
AIR POLLUTION
MODAL SHIFT
IMPACT
LEVEL
**
**
*
COMMENTS
Car Sharing users reduce their car
kilometres travelled and each Car Sharing
vehicle replace several private passenger
cars. This lead to a decrease in on-street
parking pressure and in circulating
passenger cars.
Savings in fuel consumption and pollutant
emissions are expected because the CS
vehicles are typically newer than private
vehicles and with better engine technology,
improved fuel efficiency and lower emission
levels.
According to the results of a Swiss CarSharing evaluationsurvey, published 2006,
every active Car Sharing user releaves the
environment per year with 290 kg less of
GHG emissions.
Car Sharing reduces the private car
ownership and use per capita and
encourages public transport, walking,
cycling.
MEASURED
IMPACTS*
Munich
 -59% in km travelled by car
per year (before and after
joining a Car Sharing
service).
 every Car-Sharing vehicle
replaces 4 to 8 private
passenger cars
 -2.900 private passenger
cars.
(MOMO Project data)
Munich
 -12% in CO2 emission factor
(g/km) based on the
comparison between
private cars fleet and CS
fleet.
Germany
 104.023 t CO2 emission
saved by Car Sahring
customers in 2011.
(MOMO Project data)
Italy
 According to the results of
a national survey involving
12.000 Car-Sharing
customers, after joining the
service the average user
travelled by car 3.000 km
less per year, choosing
other modes (PT, bicycle,
walking) more frequently.
[*, ** or *** indicate the strength of the impact]
Objective
Rating
Comments
Congestion Reduction
2
Reduces total per capita vehicle travel.
Road & Parking Savings
2
Reduces total automobile ownership and use.
Consumer Savings
2
Reduces total transportation expenditures.
Transport Choice
3
Encourages public transport, walking, cycling
Road Safety
2
Reduces total automobile use.
Environmental
2
Reduces total automobile use.
Protection
Efficient Land Use
2
Supports reduced automobile ownership.
Community Liveability
2
Reduces total automobile use.
Rating from 3 (very beneficial) to –3 (very harmful). A 0 indicates no impact or mixed impacts
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Integration potential
Modern systems are trying to integrate carpooling and carsharing services with public transport, sharing
information with other systems like public transport planning, itinerary calculation tools and payment
means especially if based on smart-cards. Integration with GPS and internet is of benefit of such systems.
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Implementation
It is not easy to sum up here practical indication for a successful deployment of carpooling and carsharing
schemes, since they depend upon several city characteristics and other factors. The following list tries to
sum-up the main ones for the above mentioned services:
Carpooling:
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It should be part of a comprehensive mobility plan;
It needs funding to implement an efficient matching tool;
Effectiveness depends on the availability of appropriate incentives (HOV, subsidies, free parking,
etc…);
Marketing efforts may be needed to inform potential users about cost savings and create the
largest as possible pool of users;
It should be flexible: Carpooling can struggle to be flexible enough to accommodate en-route stops
or changes to working times/patterns. To counter this some schemes offer 'guaranteed ride home'
arrangement with a local taxi company.
It should be reliable: if a carpooling network lacks a "critical mass" of participants, it may be difficult
to find a solution for certain trips. In addition, the parties may not necessarily follow through on the
agreed-upon ride. Several internet carpooling schemes are addressing this concern by
implementing systems for flagging irresponsible users, and by completing ride payments even if
passengers do not turn up.
It should be secure: concerns over security have long been an obstacle to sharing a vehicle with
strangers, though in reality the risk of crime is small. One remedy used by internet carpooling
schemes is to use systems for flagging problematic users.
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
In summary, you will be ready for the implementation if key problems are identified, scheme
requirements defined, existing solutions evaluated, support and networking activated, a "Local
champion" involved, the necessary resources and teamwork is allocated, the marketing strategy
developed.
When implementing a carsharing service, it really worth designing it taking into account the following
elements:
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Funding (granting a public funding for start-up, then the system should be self-sustainable);
Accessibility (location design should take into account the number of nearby residents);
Affordability (reasonable rates, encourage short trips);
Convenience (fleet is composed by several different types of vehicles; vehicles are easy to check in
and out at any time);
Capacity factor: aim to a good mix of private and business customers at any given location, in order
toh ave a complementary use of vehicles;
Reliability (vehicles are usually available and have minimal mechanical failures)
Marketing the service with particular attention to cost savings and work in collaboration with public
transport companies to provide integrated transport packages.
Supportingmeasures: The implementation of a lift-sharing or a car-sharing scheme should be accompanied
by supporting measures and be integrated with an overall transport planning. An overview of possible
measures includes "Carrots" - incentives to use sharing services, "Sticks" - discouraging the use of single
occupancy vehicles or congestion charging, but also multi- and intermodal integration, walking and cycling
as well as organisational integration with links to public transport interchanges and integration of Urban
sharing Services in public transport (online) information services.
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Examples
Case studies describing use of the tool: a) In previous large scale events, b) in more general contexts
Special Event Ridesharing
King County Metro has incorporated special event ridematching into its regional rideshare program
(www.rideshareonline.com). Seattle Center and the University of Washington are helping to promote the
service in King County, hoping it will attract more attendees to events at their venues.
To use the service, visit the website and select an event from a list that currently features more than 30
picks. Then, enter some basic information, including your name and home address or a nearby intersection.
If others who live near you are also looking for a buddy for that event, their e-mail addresses will pop up.
You can even check a map to see who's attending and lives closest to your home. People then e-mail one
another privately, screening potential buddies for the right match.
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In coming months Metro plans to launch a similar effort organizing rides to private events. In a region
where traffic worsens by the year, the ability to go online and find a car pool fast can revolutionize the way
people get around, according to Metro Planner Park Woodworth, or helped establish the program. The
possibilities are endless, including business meetings, little League games, industry events, weddings.
Neighbours on their way to the grocery could even get online to check whether a nearby senior citizen
needs a lift, producing social benefits in addition to environmental and cost-saving benefits.
Good practice examples (general examples, not only from large events)
Some mature schemes already exist for carpooling like Liftshare.com and Pendlernetz.
Liftshare.com Ltd is a commercial company that was founded in 1997 by Ali Clabburn, who had the idea of
a web-based matching service after having used a lift-sharing scheme in Germany. Today, liftshare.com
(https://www.liftshare.com/uk/) is a national service in the UK that also provides separately branded liftsharing schemes to hundreds of businesses and communities.
Users simply enter their liftshare offer or request online via a national portal (www.liftshare.com) or locally
branded websites (e.g. for the London region). Liftshare membership stands at more than 141,000
members nationwide and is continuously growing. In 2006, a series of new services was launched, widening
the range of modes covered (BikeBUDi, WalkBUDi, TaxiBUDi and TravelBUDI).
Pendlernetz NRW: The Bürgerservice Pendlernetz NRW (commuters’ network for citizens) is a web-based
matching service for lift-sharing which is available in more than 165 municipalities in the Federal State of
North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.
The service is available through a central Pendlernetz website and the websites of participating local
authorities. The Pendlernetz scheme was developed out of a local agenda 21 process and was implemented
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in a wider region through cooperation of a variety of local authorities in a policy-driven process. The
software solution is provided by the commercial company Europe Media Alive.
The catchment area of the service has 7.2 million inhabitants, 2.2 million of whom are commuters.
Currently there are 8,000-9,000 lift-share offers and requests online daily. Pendlernetz is open to all. The
main target group is commuters, but people with other trip purposes also show interest in the service.
Car-Sharing started in Bremen (population 547,000) in 1990. In 1998, the city introduced the combined
offer of a public transport season ticket and Car-Sharing access, known as the “Bremer Karte plus
AutoCard”. Because of its positive impacts on both urban transport and on the quality of the urban
environment, Car-Sharing has become a key component of urban transport strategies in Bremen. This
involves the (private) operator of the local Car-Sharing company, the City of Bremen, and all of the regional
Public Transport operators. As of spring of 2008, there were more than 4500 Car-Sharing users in Bremen,
with a fleet of more than 100 Car-Sharing cars parked at 37 stations throughout the city, replacing about
900 private cars.
The next figures show a “mobility point” (left) that includes carsharing, bikesharing and public transport
stop, and the integrated carsharing and public transport subscription (right) in Bremen, showing the
potential for integration.
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