Communauto announced yesterday the expansion, in the weeks to come, of the Auto-mobile service to the Montreal, Quebec boroughs of Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie and Côte-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grâce.
The decision to move from the pilot phase of the service, which was previously only accessible within the the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough, to a larger area was motivated by the decisions made last night by the Borough Councils to approve legislation allowing carsharing vehicles to park in residents-only reserved zones.
Communauto has, since spring 2011, reiterated both the company’s will as well as ability to set up a one-way carsharing system if the City and the Montreal community wished it so.
Communauto said the pilot project was launched in June 2013 to provide evaluation components to the City and to the operators of other modes of transportation (taxi, public transport, etc.) without creating an imbalance in the existing transportation offers. This project took place in the context of the public consultation held by the City to evaluate the interest in this type of service.
“We would have preferred that the boroughs comply with the steps of the process launched by the City (which is what Outremont seems to have decided last night, by deferring the proposal that was on the agenda of the Council meeting) and be more ambitious in their requirements to promote the use of electric vehicles, as we did in the Plateau-Mont-Royal, but if some prefer to move forward more quickly, we will be there to answer this demand, “said Mr. Marco Viviani, Director, development and public relations at Communauto.
In the coming weeks, when the necessary regulations for the granting of such permits are in place, Communauto will allocate nearly one hundred Auto-mobile vehicles in the area now available to one-way carsharing.
Communauto stated that given the uncertainty regarding the future of this type of service, in the electoral context prevailing in Montreal, and the requirements of competitiveness with other providers, the next vehicles used for Communauto’s new service will be hybrid cars.
“In a context of free competition, it is important that the City determines the requirements that service providers will need to meet in order to have the privilege of obtaining the new permits. It will then be up to us to comply. Under no circumstances should it offer free parking for the vehicles, even if electric. Carsharing has long demonstrated its ability to self finance. This service should not open the door to a new way of subsidizing the car. The City does not have the means. Instead, it should use the revenue generated by the issuing of such parking permits to facilitate the funding of other services” added Mr. Benoît Robert, president and founder of Communauto.