New car share deal to drive greener future for Capital

Strides to improve air quality in Edinburgh received a welcome boost today with the approval of a new citywide car club scheme for the Capital.

The Council has given the green light to a four-year contract with Enterprise Car Club, who have been providing an extremely successful car club service in Edinburgh for a number of years - giving residents and visitors the opportunity to use a vehicle by the hour, as and when they need one.

In 1999, Edinburgh introduced the first pay-as-you-drive car club in the UK. Over the past 17 years the Council has worked in partnership with various service providers to develop, promote and sustain the growth of car-sharing in Edinburgh.

The now revitalised scheme is intended to further drive down carbon emissions, reduce congestion and ease parking pressure across the city. Enterprise Car Club will be working in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council to introduce more efficient vehicle technologies and greater access to vehicles to increase the sustainability of the scheme.

Enterprise Car Club operates one of the largest pay-as-you-drive membership schemes in the UK with more than 31,000 members, both private and corporate, and approximately 950 vehicles available to members in 19 UK cities. The company won the Transport Award at the 2015 VIBES Awards, which aim to encourage the efficient use of resources, enhance competitiveness, improve environmental performance and support the wider goals of sustainable development.

Transport Convener Councillor Lesley Hinds said: "This is really good news for the city. By signing up Enterprise Car Club to provide an improved citywide car-sharing scheme across the Capital, we're helping promote a convenient, reliable alternative to private car ownership, which will cut down on congestion and competition for parking places as well as slashing carbon emissions. I'm sure we'll see more and more people signing up to become members, especially with the reduction in fees and hourly rates for vehicle use.

"It's great to see that Enterprise Club shares our commitment to improving Edinburgh's environment and cut harmful greenhouse gas emissions; ridding their fleet of diesel vehicles and agreeing to provide at least 12 electric vehicles clearly demonstrates that they're on board with this mission."

Khaled Shahbo, Managing Director, Enterprise Rent-A-Car UK & Ireland, said: "We are absolutely delighted to continue our very successful partnership with the city of Edinburgh. It is one of our oldest car club partners, was an early adopter and has been at the forefront of sustainable advancements in transportation.

"We believe that great things happen when we listen to our customers, which is why we work closely with our local authority partners to develop Enterprise Car Club programmes that are tailored to local priorities. 

"We can be flexible and respond quickly to our customers’ needs as our Car Club operation is closely aligned to our Enterprise Rent-A-Car branch network which has over 420 branches nationwide, and six branches just in and around Edinburgh."

The contract, agreed by the Finance & Resources Committee at their meeting on 12 May 2016, also applies to the Council itself.  Like other service users, Council staff will have access to a fleet of vehicles suitable to their varied car-sharing requirements.  

The Council estimates that the Enterprise Car Club contract will generate more than £1m for the public purse over its four-year tenure, while helping greatly towards the Council's and national greenhouse gas targets of reducing emissions year on year. 

The Council has always had a commitment, within its Local Transport Strategy, to encourage the more efficient use of cars through measures such as parking controls, management of the road network and promotion of car-sharing. It is the Council’s vision that, by 2030, Edinburgh’s transport system will be one of the greenest, healthiest and most accessible in northern Europe. Car-sharing is viewed as an integral part of achieving the Council’s ambitious transport goals.

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