Earlier this week, Automotive News published a feature article on the BlueIndy all-electric car sharing program in Indianapolis, which highlighted its early adoption rates of more than 500 members in the first few weeks of operation. One early adopter, who already got rid of her personal vehicle, said, “I’m thrilled not to have the car payment, the insurance, the oil changes, the fill-ups. We don’t have a great mass transit system. That [BlueIndy] was the final piece I needed to sell my car.”
ESN President and CEO Paul Mitchell was also interviewed for the story, describing his first impressions of the service during a visit to Paris in 2013.
“I was blown away by the number of technologies they had integrated,” said Mitchell. “I was impressed by the IT systems, back office operations, and sturdy charging stations.”
As conversations about the “sharing economy” are becoming more prevalent, Indianapolis could be at the focal point of national conversation as more communities are considering these types of ride sharing services.
The co-director of the Transportation Sustainability Research Center at UC-Berkeley, Susan Shaheen, agrees that Indianapolis may serve as a case study. “One of the questions people are looking at is can these services work in cities of smaller scale? Could they provide the same kind of benefits in cities that don’t have the same density or the same kinds of public transportation network?”
Visit BlueIndy’s website for information about memberships and to find the 28 locations currently operational.