HourCar, a non-profit carsharing service, has been added to Rochester’s growing array of transportation options. The program launched earlier this month with an initial fleet of five vehicles stationed in downtown, building to a total of 10 vehicles over the next three years.
“Our goal is to give people more choices for getting around and to reduce our reliance on single-occupancy vehicles,” Paul Schroeder, CEO of HourCar, said in a statement. “We want to enable downtown commuters to ride their bike or take the bus because they have access to an Hourcar in case something comes up. We want to give students and people who live downtown an alternative to buying monthly contract parking to store a car they rarely use.”
The new carsharing program will contribute to the city’s transportation mode-shift goal of reducing single-occupied vehicle trips from its current rate of 70% to less than 50% over the next 20 years, an objective of the city’s comprehensive plan, Planning 2 Succeed.
“One of the objectives of the Destination Medical Center Integrated Transit Studies (completed in 2017) was to offer modes of transportation to meet the needs of all types of users,” Jaymi Wilson, City of Rochester Project Manager, said in a statement. “This program will increase use of public transit, walking, and biking and provide residents with more affordable short-term transportation options. It will also support our community’s sustainability goals by helping to reduce vehicles miles traveled, greenhouse gasses, and both air and parking congestion.”
HourCar is a membership-based program with multiple rate plans. To use HourCar, members reserve a vehicle from a hub and return it to the same hub when they’re finished. Membership is open to licensed drivers age 18 or older who have relatively clean driving records.