Ultra-small cars are quite a common sight in Portland. That’s because Car2Go, one company that coordinates the ride-when-you-need-it car rental, has 464 cars available throughout Portland in a 32-square-mile area, and competitor Zipcar owns another 200. Car2Go is expanding its service area east to 82nd Avenue between Northeast Killingsworth Street and Southeast Woodstock Boulevard to add another three square miles.
Car2Go general manager Ken Hills told a mid-September meeting of Rose City Park Neighborhood’s Land Use and Transportation Committee that there were too many clients having to “hoof it” west to 60th Avenue to find one of the cars. Car2Go vehicles are able to be parked on any city street inside the operating area when clients are finished with them.
“Most of our customers use bikes, walk or take public transportation,” Hills told the committee, “but sometimes, they need a car, and the annual permits we purchase allow them to pick them up and park them anywhere within our operating area.” Car2Go customers use their smart phones to locate the cars, Hills added. He said Car2Go tries to keep the distribution of cars at 10 cars per square mile and uses “relocation teams” when one area becomes auto-saturated.