January 20, 2012 | 10:29am
It's a slippery slope down the path of transportation socialism, ain't it? First it starts with public buses, then the City of Miami Beach got a taste of bike sharing with DecoBike, and now the city is about to launch a car sharing service. The city has partnered with Hertz on Demand, and residents and tourists will be able to rent cars for as little as $9 an hour.
"This is a really great reason not to have a car on Miami Beach," Miami Beach parking director, Saul Frances
tells The Miami Herald
. "You really don't need one with this program because you can just pick up a car at one of our garages."
The service launches on Tuesday, and participants only need to register for free through the Hertz On Demand website
. They'll receive a swipe card and be able to rent cars for as little as $9-an-hour or $63-a-day. Drivers will then be able to pick up the cars on the top level of city garages. Gas is included (though you must return the car with more than a quarter tank).
The car sharing program idea isn't new to the Miami area. The University of Miami partnered with a similar service, ZipCar, years ago, but this is the largest implementation of the idea yet in the area. The program will launch with 20 cars.
Sounds like a perfect idea for that particular type of Miami Beach resident who rarely leaves the beach and makes little use of their car, and for tourists who may want to rent a car for a limited time to check out those areas across the bridge.
The city will make about $84,000 a year by renting the parking spots to Hertz according to the Herald
, and in year three will start getting a cut of the profits.