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New Plymouth Gets Car Share

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Cityhop, NZ's first car share company, is delighted to launch its first car share spot in New Plymouth coinciding with Car Free Day September 22. A special joining fee of only $50 was also launched for the day.

Mayor, Peter Tennent says, “We’re delighted to be the first provincial city in New Zealand to get on board with Cityhop. We’re starting with one car and we’ll see how it goes. The success of our recent eDay showed that we’re an environmentally conscious bunch here in New Plymouth, so we’re hopeful people will take advantage of this great new service.”
Says Victoria Carter, CEO of Cityhop, “A city like New Plymouth getting into the concept of car share sets a wonderful example for the rest of the country that wants to create more liveable cities.
“We have had a lot of interest from individuals in New Plymouth since cityhop launched 3 years ago.  However we wanted to get established in congested cities first.
To acknowledge the city’s progressive efforts Cityhop is offering a discount for 2 weeks. Instead of $75 per individual to join the company is offering membership at $50.
“This is a progressive city recognizing that they can improve the quality of their city by reducing the impact of cars. Between 1996 and 2006 the population of Taranaki increased by 100 people yet the number of cars on the road increased by 4800!
“Car sharing is the realistic alternative to going cold turkey and getting rid of a car. It encourages us to rely less on the individual car. International research shows that people who car share reduce the amount of driving they often decide against buying another car or sell one car; and they walk or bike more as well as making better use of public transport, ends Victoria”
A number of locals have lobbied the council to get car share and thanks to the support of the council a joint venture between the council and Cityhop is underway.
Says Nathaniel Benefield, New Plymouth District Council sustainable transport co-ordinator, “ I hope the car will be encourage people to think about and plan their journeys before leaving home. Instead of bringing a car to town we want to encourage people to walk, cycle, bus then if they need a car to cityhop for $15 an hour, including the fuel and maintenance.
To begin, one car will be located in the carpark on the corner of Egmont and Ariki St making it easy for people to use public transport and car share when they need too.

Cityhop is the only true alternative to car ownership with the convenience and flexibility of being able to hire a private car without owning one. A car sharing modal intended to reduce the need for, or reliance on, individual car ownership, it is based on the same concept as a car hire company except that instead of one depot it has lots of car parks and members can hire by the hour.

Cityhop has over 30 cars in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and now New Plymouth. Over 350 members ranging from individuals to over 70 businesses with drivers from 5 to 1500 access the cars by the hour.

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