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CityWheels a smart way to improve urban livability

Marc Lefkowitz  |  03/20/06 @ 10:03am

Dave Brook is the Portland-based social entrepreneur who launched the first commercial carsharing venture in the U.S. and now consults and runs a popular carsharing blog.

Brook was in town recently to offer wisdom to the nation's newest carshare operation, CityWheels, which was launched in Oberlin in February by EcoCity Cleveland transportation guru Ryan McKenzie (CityWheels just rolled out its first Cleveland cars this week in Ohio City and the Coventry Road area in Cleveland Heights. More Cleveland cars are soon to follow).

Brook spoke to a group at the Cleveland Environmental Center about the benefits of carsharing as a tool to improve urban livability. He confirmed that carsharing will get another boost soon when the U.S. Green Building Council releases its new LEED green building guidelines with carsharing included as a way to earn points.

A discussion ensued about how carsharing can impact the urban form of cities, such as reducing the need for parking by taking cars off the road. Brook noted that San Francisco recently added an addendum to its building and zoning codes that allows developers to reduce parking if they include a carsharing spot. That caught the attention of those in the room, including city of Cleveland Sustainability Manager Andrew Watterson. 

Needed: A copy of the section of San Francisco's building and zoning codes that offers the language on the parking reduction.

What will it take for Cleveland to do the same?  

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