Car2Go Leaving Columbus

A ray of sunshine when they first came to town, Car2Go's
absence will leave many central Ohioans stranded. 
In a move that has left quite a few people stranded in Columbus, the ride-sharing company Car2Go has announced today that they're pulling out of the local market as of May 31.


This has got me more than a little pissed off and very inconvenienced.

There's no doubt - Car2Go improved the quality of my family's life for the past few years while they were active in town. As a one-car family where I rode my bike and took the bus most days, Car2Go filled in the gap nicely when we needed that extra set of wheels to get ourselves places.

Here's the news they sent out via their website today:

HELLO,
We’re writing to let you know that after careful consideration, we have made the difficult decision to discontinue car2go service in Columbus, effective May 31, 2018.
In 2013, car2go was the first company to bring one-way, free-floating carshare to Columbus. Since then, we have strongly advocated for smarter, more innovative and affordable mobility solutions in Columbus. However, despite our best efforts and investment, there has not been enough adoption of our service to continue operations here.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOUR CAR2GO MEMBERSHIP?
You can still use car2go in Columbus through May 31st, though you may find fewer vehicles available as we approach that date.
You can still use your car2go membership to make trips in each of our other North American car2go locations. Please visit our website for a full list of U.S. and Canadian locations where you can continue to drive with car2go.
We want to extend a heartfelt thank you to you and every member of the Columbus community who supported us throughout the years. We deeply regret any inconvenience this decision may cause you. We truly hope that as more people around the world – like you – adopt carsharing and embrace all its economic and environmental benefits, we might one day resume our service here.
For any questions or concerns, please contact us at memberservicesNA@car2go.com.
As always, thank you for your membership. It’s been a pleasure driving with you. 
Sincerely, 
Your car2go Columbus Team
I am going to be very blunt here:  this sucks, and is indicative of one of the things that I really dislike about living in the Midwest: the need to conform.

I live in Clintonville and work downtown, like a lot of people. My wife and I chose this location partially because it would make it easy for us to get by with one car regularly.  And for the most part, it's worked marvelously.  The bus routes between Clintonville and downtown are numerous and easy to manage. The city built bike lanes on one of the key routes between our neighborhood and downtown, and of course the Olentangy bike trail provides another route on the other side of High Street.  And to fill in the gaps when we really needed that other car:  Car2Go filled in.

And now it's going away.

It leaves me wondering how many people could have improved their lives by dumping a car and moving to a non-car-owning model like we did. I'm sure that the number is high - which makes me sad.  There are a lot of people who simply couldn't leave the comfort zone of car ownership, and will never know the benefits that it would have on their lives. But because of some perceived stigma around using public transportation and not owning a car, most people who could have done so did not. 

It'll be an adjustment for us to see what the next step is. My wife is busy with the car pretty much every night of the week most of the year as a swim coach, so we're going to have to reassess our ability to not own a second car.  She was able to take on that role because of Car2Go and the freedom it gave us. 

Apparently Columbus isn't the only city losing the service - Toronto is another city that is losing its Car2Go, but for apparently different reasons involving street parking regulations

Car2Go - thanks for giving Columbus a try. I hope you'll be back. 

People, not speed.

Comments