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Rochester, MN  55904
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New car-sharing service will launch in Rochester this December

Post Date:11/26/2019 1:59 PM

A new car-sharing program will roll into Rochester this December for quick trips and overnight rentals.

HOURCAR, a non-profit car-sharing service, will be added to Rochester’s growing array of transportation options beginning on December 9, 2019. The program will launch with an initial fleet of five vehicles stationed in downtown, building to a total of 10 vehicles over the next three years.

“Our goal is to give people more choices for getting around and to reduce our reliance on single-occupancy vehicles,” said Paul Schroeder, CEO of HOURCAR. “We want to enable downtown commuters to ride their bike or take the bus because they have access to an Hourcar in case something comes up. We want to give students and people who live downtown an alternative to buying monthly contract parking to store a car they rarely use.”

The new car-sharing program will contribute to the city’s transportation mode-shift goal of reducing single-occupied vehicle trips from its current rate of 70% to less than 50% over the next 20 years, an objective of the city’s comprehensive plan, Planning 2 Succeed.                                                           

“One of the objectives of the Destination Medical Center Integrated Transit Studies [completed in 2017] was to offer modes of transportation to meet the needs of all types of users,” said Jaymi Wilson, City of Rochester Project Manager. “This program will increase use of public transit, walking, and biking and provide residents with more affordable short-term transportation options. It will also support our community’s sustainability goals by helping to reduce vehicles miles traveled, greenhouse gasses, and both air and parking congestion.”

HOURCAR offers yet another incentive to downtown residents and employees to give up or reduce their dependence on single-passenger vehicles. It is a membership-based program with multiple rate plans. A single membership includes both the Rochester and Twin Cities markets. 

To use HOURCAR, members reserve a vehicle from a hub and return it to the same hub when they’re finished. Reservations for HOURCARs in the Rochester market can be made starting Friday, December 6, 2019 at rochester.hourcar.org

Membership is open to licensed drivers age 18 or older who have relatively clean driving records. HOURCAR hubs will launch at the following locations:

  • Third Street Parking Ramp (3rd St SW & 1st Ave SW)
  • Second Street Parking Ramp (2nd St SE & 1st Ave SE)
  • Ramp 6 (E Center St & 1st Ave SE)
  • People’s Food Co-op (519 1st Ave SW)

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About HOURCAR: HOURCAR is a 501(c)3 nonprofit shared-mobility organization based in Saint Paul, Minnesota. They connect their members to their communities with convenient, equitable, and sustainable multimodal transportation. They offer members short-term reservations to a fleet of over 60 safe and efficient cars, trucks, and crossovers at more than 50 hubs in the Twin Cities and Rochester. Learn more at hourcar.org and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @hourcar.