The Wheels are Turning: Zipcar era Ushered in Locally with Ceremony

by Jonathan Bissonnette of the Pawtucket Times 

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Residents in Pawtucket and Central Falls looking for a convenient answer to their transformation needs can now find that solution at various locations across the neighboring cities, as the popular car-sharing service Zipcar was formally launched Wednesday.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony welcoming the service to the two cities was held at Old Slater Mill, which will also serve as one of the three sites where the fleet of vehicles will be located.

Pawtucket Mayor Donald R. Grebien used a pair of oversized scissors to cut a neon green ribbon wrapped around a Mini Cooper, one of the vehicles that will be available through Zipcar, formally welcoming the service to Pawtucket and Central Falls.

Prior to cutting the ribbon and welcoming Zipcar to the communities, Grebien said that it provides a "great opportunity" to residents, while also saying there is a "cool factor" that goes along with communities that provide the service.

"There's a 'swag' that goes with it," Grebien said, noting it was a "joint effort" between Pawtucket, Central Falls, and Zipcar that brought the car-sharing network to the community.

Central Falls Mayor James Diossa said that he was "truly excited" to welcome the service, adding that transportation access is important for the cities.

"It shows there's a market of need in Pawtucket and Central Falls," Diossa said. "We need to recognize the concept of transportation is truly important for our communities."

The fleet of six vehicles will be located in three locations in the two cities, including Old Slater Mill, the corner of Park Place west and Main Street in Pawtucket, and 544 Roosevelt Ave. in Central Falls.

A subsidiary of Avis Budget Group Inc., Zipcar has operations in urban areas and college campuses throughout the United States, Austria, Canada, France, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom, and offers more than 50 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to residents and businesses.

Zipcar Market Manager Christopher Moulding said "couldn't be more excited" to see the service expanding into the two cities.

There's a commitment to make transportation in the cities better, he said, later adding that he hopes to continue to build the relationship and bring more vehicles to the cities.

To join Zipcar, apply online at members.zipcar.com/registration. Once approved, you'll get your Zipcard. From there, you reserve a vehicle online or via the mobile app. You then arrive at the vehicle and hold your Zipcard to the windshield.  When your time allotted with the car has nearly expired, return the vehicle to the reserved parking spot.

According to the Zipcar website, membership is $7 a month and driving rates are from $8 to $10 per hour. Rates vary by city and car model.

 

Full article can be view in Wednesday's (5/7) edition of The Times.


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