Criticism against Sydney Council’s car share program

We have recently focused on the emergence of Car
Sharing, both in Australia and across the world, from a planning, development
and parking perspective. For the most part, our coverage of car sharing
programs has concentrated on the benefits of car sharing programs, and how the
City of Sydney in particular has enthusiastically embraced them.

However, as can be expected, not everyone is in favour
of these schemes. Bayswater Car Rentals, for example, claim that the scheme
effectively ‘subsidises their competition’, providing car sharing operators
with free on-street parking whereas they are still required to pay commercial
rates for parking spaces. The car-share companies do not pay rent for their car
spaces, on the grounds that they are used mostly by residents, but they do pay
the annual parking permit fees for each of their vehicles that residents also
pay – $49 a year.

The council also bears the cost of enforcing the
exclusive use of the spaces through its rangers, however, it has said it would
impose charges for the partial or full cost of installing onstreet car spaces
from 2011/12 onwards.

Resident groups in inner-city Sydney claim that the car sharing schemes have lost a large number of car spaces (they claim a number
of around 50 spaces), being replaced by car-share vehicles that sit for days
unused, reducing availability in busy urban areas.

Interesting to see the other side of the story!
Obviously car sharing will be at its most effective given high utility rates.
But have Sydney Councils gone too far?

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