Car sharing programs in Hyde Park

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[Another kind of service is pickup livery, such as Quadrangle- Gershon Meyer, 5443 S. Ridgewood Ct.. 773 41808228, And Hyde Park Livery]

Sign up for Chicago Card Plus I-Go Card and get a big discount. to Feb 29 2012.

Updated websites: (Disregard any other url.)

Chicago is gearing up to install battery car recharge stations. CMAP says:
A Positive Charge. This week, the City of Chicago announced it will use ARRA funds to install more than 280 charging stations for electric cars throughout the city and suburbs in 2011. Some of the stations will be used for car sharing programs like I-GO, which plans to offer a discount on electric vehicles in its fleet. The public charging stations will allow increased use of electric vehicles, which, as the Tribune points out, are a good choice for an urban environment like metropolitan Chicago, where average trips are under 40 miles -- well within the 100-mile range for most electric car batteries.

The U of C now gives free memberships in I-GO and Zipcar (*which has now joined in the car sahring market in Chicago and Hyde Park) to employees. The cars are in Lexington, Kimbark (by the Lab School/GSB), and Pierce lots.
On campus there are at least 14 Zipcars in addition to those of I-GO and others. A limited number are available to those univerity-affilited who are aged 18 - 21. Share car was expanded even further by the U of C.

Rep. Currie announced Nov. 15, 2010: "Courtesy of I-GO, our nonprofit car-sharing program, I had a chance to drive the all-electric Mitsubishi i-Miev last month. I-GO plans to add 30 all-electrics to its current fleet of 250 fuel-efficient cars. I-GO, an affiliate of the Center for Neighborhood Technology, is focused on reducing the number of cars on city streets and cutting down pollution. The car was a treat to drive, but it's unbelievably quiet. I worry that, without adding a bell or a whistle, an unsuspecting pedestrian could be in trouble. The biggest problem with the electric car is the need for car-charging stations. Home chargers are impracticable. Some gasoline stations are looking into the opportunity to install them, and the City of Chicago has asked companies to bid to provide them. The bid includes 36 car-chargers for I-GO."


I-Go Carsharing was adopted locally and incubated by Center for Neighborhood Technology through a federal transportation grant, with a growing list of partners, including CTA, Metra and the Chicago Area Transportation Study. In the last two years, it has grown to nearly 50 cars and 1700 members and is poised to reach breakeven sustainability with 80 cars in 2005. It is nonprofit. While the most saturated areas are on the North Side, especially along the Red Line from Harrison to Rogers Park, it has five ? car park locations in Hyde Park with potential to grow--especially since a sticker can now be placed on ones CTA transit card making a car-bus-train trip seamless. Besides, its a boon to transit use and getting cars (and emissions-congestion) off the roads. It started in Europe, where there are now 200,000 members and jumped the pond 6 years ago--available in 12 regions around the country.

I-GO received in spring 2006 a federal QMAC grant to add 60 cars further into the city and at least one suburb (Evanston) and increase density in currently-served areas. New technology will be added for tracking and availability.

Contacts: Sharon Feigon, CEO 7733 269-4928m 663 2687-4800 x 227., 2125 W. North Avenue, Chicago, IL 60647.
Also, esp. for businesses, Sales and Marketing Manager Richard Kosmacher, 773 269-4011.

From I-Go literature:

Save Money, Simplify Your Life. Reserve a car by the hour when YOU need it, pick it up right in YOUR Neighborhood.

What is I-GO? Pay-per-hour sharing service that gives you the convenience and flexibility of owning a car without the cost and hassles. Members have 24-hour access to I-GO cars located in their communities, in reserved parking spaces. Cars can be reserved by phone or on-line at www. for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Why use I-GO?


Other advantages- note for businesses!:

Advantages over rental

National benefits

Results in Chicago so far

New ideas:

How do I become a member? Apply online, over the phone or by mail.

Who is eligible to become a member? Applicants must be between 21-75 years old, have a valid driver's license and have been driving at least 5 years, a good driving record and a valid credit or debit card.

What does it cost to join? It costs a total of $25 to join and there is a $25 annual renewal fee.
Application (one time) $25, Membership (one time) $50, Annual Renewal fee $25.

What does it cost to use? Standard Plan $6 an hour and $.50 a mile.
Usage fees- per hour 7 am-11 pm $6, night free; per mile $.50.

Is there a plan that offers free miles? The Standard Plus Plan costs $9.20 an hour and includes 20 free miles. There are three prepaid monthly plans: the GO 10 ($85 a month has 10 hours and 100 miles), the GO 15 ($135 a month wit 15 hours and 150 miles) and the GO 25 ($225 a month with 25 hours and 250 miles.) Also 50 and 100 plans esp. for business. Now, an all-day rate plan $60 with 200 free miles for special vehicles. Also discounts available.

When is I-GO for me? If you

Reserving: 866 446-7372 or From minutes to weeks in advance, using a car near you or any car in the fleet.

Cars: Late model Honda Civic Sedans, Hybrids, Elements.

Locations on request- 47 late 2005. 6 in downtown/Streeterville, 4 in Edgewater/Andersonville, 1 Evanston, 4 Hyde Park, 4 Lakeview/Roscoe, 3 Lincoln Park, 3 Lincoln Square, 1 Logan Square Blue Line, 3 Near North, 3 Printers Row and near, 2 Rogers Park, 2 Uptown, 3 West Loop, 3 Wicker Park.
Coming: Albany Park, Austin, Bronzeville, Chinatown, Oak Park, Pilsen, River NOrth, South Shore, UIC/ ... more all the time.


Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (25th) touts carshare, says Illinois has a blocking tax that is being worked around.

Hyde Park Herald July 12, 2006

Too many cars on the street? Not enough places to park? Car sharing can help. The idea is that you don't have to buy a car in order to have one when you need to keep a doctor's appointment or do the weekly grocery shopping. Car sharing services, first developed in Europe, keep people from buying the first car or adding a second to the family fleet.

I-GO, launched by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, is a not-for-profit car-sharing program that's been operating in many Chicago communities since 2002. We have four different I-GO stations in Hyde Park-Kenwood and one in South Shore. It costs $75 to join, with a $25 annual membership fee. The charge is a flat $6 plus 50 cents mile, which includes gas, insurance and 24-hour roadside assistance. Members reserve cars over the web or the telephone. An electronic key card is remotely programmed so the member can let himself or herself into the car--and start the engine.

The estimate is that every shared car keeps more than 10 privately-owned cars off the street. Nationally more than 40 percent of car sharers report they sold a car or decided against buying one when car share came their way. Car sharing saves big bucks. Consider the cost of a car, even used. And remember to add in maintenance, fuel and insurance.

Dar share works because it's convenient, because it's reasonably priced and because it's available for short-term use. Although our Chicago experience is based in the not-for-profit sector, capitalists are interested as well. Several national companies are making money as the car-share model becomes increasingly popular.

In other cities, however, car sharing operations don't have to pay state rental car taxes. Not so in Illinois, where state taxes threaten the viability of I-GO and present an obstacle to car sharing companies otherwise interested in breaking into the Chicago market. Zipcar, for example, is growing by leaps and bounds in Toronto, Boston and San Francisco. But not in Chicago. Efforts to restructure the state rental car tax, exempting membership operations whose goal is reducing private car ownership, came up short in Springfield this session.

But I've been working with the state Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to find another way to encourage car sharing in our state. We won approval for a pilot grant program, designed to offset the cost of the tax, that we hope will stabilize I-GO and encourage companies like Zipcar to put Chicago on their map.

I hope our incentives work. We can use a few more parking spaces and a little more room on the roadways. Perhaps most important, we can use fewer greenhouse emissions and fewer particulates in the atmosphere--in short, we can all use cleaner air.


I-Go to roll out more cars in Hyde Park, TIF Parking Committee told in November

Hyde Park Herald, Nov. 23 2005. By Erin Meyer

I-Go plans to double its existing fleet of three cars in Hyde Park in 2006. But continued development of the car-share program, like Hyde Park development on the whole, depends on finding and reserving an adequate number of parking spaces.

I-Go representative Sharon Feigon appealed to members of the 53rd Street Tax Increment Finance Council at the Nov. 16 parking committee meeting to help them market the I-Go cars.

"If you live in an area tha is really congested and it's a big hassle to park, car-sharing just makes sense," said Feigon, who is I-Go's chief executive officer. "The demand exists in Hyde Park. we just need help making sure the community knows the program is available."

Committee members, grappling with what many local business owners and residents recognize as a serious parking shortage in the neighborhood, were openly receptive to I-Go's advances.

"One of those cars can replace as many as 10 privately owned vehicles. And having fewer cars on the road means less congestion," said urban planner Irene Sherr, who works as a consultant for the parking committee. "The problem is people don't know about the program."

The car-share program serves people who need a car occasionally but do not want the added expense of buying, maintaining and insuring a car. Monica Fabre, a 32-year-old who lives on South Dorchester, has been an I-Go member since May. "I had a car and the engine blew so I tried the program and it has worked for me," she said. Fabre was happy to hear that I-Go planned to increase the size of their fleet. "It seems like more people are using he cars. Having more would make spontaneous drives more possible," Fabre said.

Licensed drivers with relatively clean records can rent I-Go cars fro $6 and hour plus 50 cents per mile after paying a $75 membership fee. The program started in 2002 as a pilot program in Hyde Park and Edgewater with four cars. In the last year and a half I-Go cars have increased in Chicago from 10 to 47, feigon said. Members now have access to cars along the Red Line, all the way from Harrison to Howard streets with a car ready for reservation every half mile.

It is the money saving that sells people on car-sharing Feigon said. I-Go members spend less than a third of the estimated $6,700 car owner spend on average each year for automobile upkeep, insurance, parking and gas. Students, young professionals and retired people comprise most of the 1,00 current I-go car-share members.

"We are really interested in expanding on the South Side. We are working with IIT (Illinois Institute of Technology)," Feigon said."We are going to to Bronzeville and South Shore in 2006."

Sherr suggested reserving a spot somewhere near the intersection of 53rd [51st?] and Lake Park Avenue because it is near public transportation and enjoys a lot of foot traffic. "If we had the parking spaces tomorrow we could have the cars available immediately," Feigon said.

Sherr and I-Go also planned to meet Monday with Pete Richter, managing director of Regents Park Apartments, 5020 S. Lake Shore Dr., to talk about reserving a parking space in the building for tenants.

For more information, visit"