Rome enhances car-sharing to curb emissions

10:14, January 04, 2011      

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Rome's City Hall on Monday enhanced its car-sharing system in a bid to further curb carbon emissions, increase sustainable mobility and spread an environmental-friendly approach among citizens.

This year's car-sharing service is set to be more efficient thanks to the purchase of additional vehicles and the allocations of more financial resources in the local budget, according to a statement by Rome mayor Gianni Alemanno's office.

In the next four years, the number of car-sharing vehicles will rise to 310, up from the current 110, and will be distributed in all the city's districts. Starting this year, all vehicles expected to circulate in the historical center will be electric in order to further protect ancient buildings from car pollution.

The goal of the local authorities is to reduce car circulation inside the city walls and eventually eliminate it all together in the historical center. Smog levels are constantly monitored by specific agencies while citizens are invited to leave at home their cars and use public transport, car-sharing or even walk.

According to Mobility councilor Sergio Marchi, "car-sharing has become a valid and efficient alternative for moving around Rome and citizens really appreciate it, especially thanks to its low costs."

Car-sharing was first launched in Rome in 2005. Considering that it has so far registered a relative success, the aim of the local authorities is to increase the number of users.

On a total of 2.7 million residents in Rome, there are currently just 2,000 car-sharing subscribers in the capital. However, the service is growing in popularity (last year users nearly doubled) with a monthly average of 60 new clients.

Apart from the usefulness of the service, prices are also very convenient. The annual subscription fee amounts to just 100 euros per person and for each ride the client pays a minimum sum according to time and distance covered (1.80 euros per hour and 0. 30 euros up to 150 kilometers).

And there are many advantages: clients don't pay parking in the city and enjoy 61 reserved lots, while they can freely circulate in the traffic and taxi restriction areas without the risk of being fined.

Source: Xinhua

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