SAN FRANCISCO--January 29, 2013: City CarShare, the largest nonprofit carsharing organization in North America, is adding three wheelchair-accessible minivans to its AccessMobile fleet. City CarShare is adding one additional vehicle to Berkeley and introducing two to the city of San Francisco. In 2008, City CarShare introduced the nation's first wheelchair-accessible carsharing vehicle in partnership with the city of Berkeley and Berkeley's Commission on Disability.
“Not only has City CarShare proven to be a leader in offering green transportation, but it also is leading the way in giving people with disabilities a new way to get around”
"Our mission is to provide convenient, affordable access to carsharing for everyone and that includes those with disabilities," says Rick Hutchinson, CEO of City CarShare. "With more AccessMobiles available on both sides of the Bay, the program illustrates our ongoing commitment to equity in transportation and City CarShare's drive to serve the needs of our community, not our bottom line."
AccessMobiles are minivans which can hold up to two people using mobility devices and up to three more passengers and a driver. The vehicles are available 24/7 to any City CarShare member. The cost is $8.25/hour or lower during Night Owl hours (midnight -- 8 a.m.), or $64 per day, plus mileage.
"I use a wheelchair full-time. With the AccessMobile, I've been able to travel outside of San Francisco to visit many places - now I have an option," says Gary Parent, City CarShare member since 2010. "If I see something I'd like to do or a place I'd like to go, there's nothing stopping me. That feeling is priceless."
For people with disabilities, the AccessMobile program increases independence and the ability to travel off the mass transit and para-transit grid for trips, without the costs of owning an expensive wheelchair-accessible vehicle.
To see the program's impact on City CarShare members, testimonials can be viewed here.
"Not only has City CarShare proven to be a leader in offering green transportation, but it also is leading the way in giving people with disabilities a new way to get around," said Edwin M. Lee, Mayor of San Francisco. "This is a great step towards ensuring San Francisco is accessible to everyone."
The four AccessMobile vehicles are available at:
- 833 Mission St. and Glen Park BART, San Francisco
- 1950 Center St. and Ashby BART, Berkeley
"Since our initial partnership with City CarShare four years ago, we've witnessed AccessMobile's positive impact on the lives of hundreds of City CarShare members who now have the freedom to decide where they want to go and how they want to get there," says Tom Bates, Mayor of Berkeley.
"City CarShare's gift of mobility allows even more people, especially those with disabilities, the opportunity to live independently and become fully participating members of their communities," says Dmitri Belser, President of Ed Roberts Campus.
The AccessMobile program's administration is supported by BART and funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration, under the "New Freedom" grant. The program is made possible through the support of several organizations including the City of Berkeley's Commission on Disability, the San Francisco Mayor's Office on Disability, Bay Area Transit (BART), the Ed Roberts Campus and the Center for Independent Living.