PHILADELPHIA - Zipcar, the world's largest car-sharing company, today announced it won the bid from the City of Philadelphia to provide car sharing for City workers. This relationship signifies the City's commitment to changing the way people - and their employees - move around Philadelphia. 

Since 2004, car sharing has helped the City eliminate approximately 330 vehicles from its fleet, and the City plans to continue streamlining its fleet through car sharing. Zipcar was selected as Philadelphia's car-sharing provider by being the lowest bidder in a competitive sealed bid. 

"We commend the City for their thought leadership on urban transportation," said Mark Norman, President and COO of Zipcar. "We look forward to providing city employees with cars on demand and introducing them to our industry-leading technology and member experience." 

Zipcar's service to the City will begin on July 1, 2008 and continue through March 31, 2009 and may be renewed for three additional years. Over the course of the contract, city employees will have access to Zipcar's diverse fleet selection, including hybrids, standard sedans, and small SUVs, ensuring access to the most appropriate car for their task. 

Recent studies by Zipcar indicate that each Zipcar takes 15 vehicles off the road and Zipcar members report that they drive an average of 4,000 miles per year less than when they owned a car. Members also report saving an average of $435 per month compared to the average cost of owning and operating a vehicle in an urban setting. 

"Our commitment to expand car sharing demonstrates that Philadelphia is supporting sustainability goals with real actions," said Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor of Transportation and Utilities for the City of Philadelphia. "Car sharing enhances existing programs in the City and allows us to have a smaller fleet of vehicles and provide the same level of service while saving tax payers money." 

In addition to the City of Philadelphia, Zipcar currently works with more than 35 municipalities and government organizations throughout the US, Canada, and the UK, including the city of Portland, Oregon, Washington Metro Transit Authority (Washington DC), District Department of Transportation (Washington, DC), Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, King County (Seattle), and Transport for London. 

Additionally, thousands of businesses nationwide as well as many throughout Philadelphia have signed corporate memberships with Zipcar to reduce travel costs in the face of rising gas prices. Currently, Zipcar has 200,000 members sharing 5,000 cars in 50 cities. Zipcar offers many benefits to its members including no per-mile fee and the industry's only mobile reservation system. 

The company offers cars-on-demand so customers can reserve cars online or with their cell phones in seconds. Zipcar offers a broad variety of vehicle types, starting with hybrid vehicles available for $6 per hour in Philadelphia.