August 01, 2018
Media Release: Modo brings carsharing to a region Hardwired for Adventure
Vancouver, BC (August 1, 2018) – Modo announces that, effective August 1, the member-owned co-op will add two vehicles in Squamish, officially marking the long-awaited arrival of carsharing to an area recognized worldwide for its culture, recreation and incredible mountain lifestyle.
The District of Squamish has collaborated with Modo to enable this exciting step forward for its 19,000+ residents. This move brings more sustainable transportation options to residents, businesses and municipal staff in a region where a privately-owned vehicle is still a necessity for many. Modo and the District hope this new mobility mode will allow families to shed their second car and in some cases, live entirely car-free.
Modo CEO Patrick Nangle believes the co-op’s purpose is well-aligned with the District’s vision to create a world-class oceanfront community with a vibrant downtown and inclusive neighbourhoods. “As Squamish grows, there is mutual interest in seeing residents and businesses reduce dependency on personally owned vehicles by adopting more active and sustainable modes of transportation, including walking, cycling, public transit and carsharing,” says Nangle. “We have an important role to play in helping the District realize its goal to foster an accessible, affordable and walkable community.”
The two hybrid vehicles – a RAV4 and Prius V – located at Chieftain Centre (1301 Pemberton Avenue) and Municipal Hall (37955 Second Avenue) will be equipped with ski and bike racks, to support this region known to many as the outdoor recreation capital of Canada. To help new members get started, a pilot collaboration between Modo and Vancity will allow locals to conveniently pick-up their Modo fobs at Squamish Savings, a Division of Vancity.
“The carsharing model offers both a convenient and affordable way to access the benefits of a vehicle without the need for ownership, and we are very excited to provide this option to Squamish residents and visitors,” says District of Squamish Mayor Patricia Heintzman. “We are always looking for innovative ways to reduce the amount of vehicle traffic on our roads. It is our hope that carsharing becomes the new alternative to owning a primary or secondary vehicle.”
According to Scott Hannah, who heads up the BC-based Credit Counselling Society, owning a car costs the average Canadian between $8,600 and $13,000 a year — about 20% of their income after tax. People across the country are looking for affordable and sustainable options, with many trading the steep housing costs in cities like Vancouver for smaller communities such as Squamish, which tend to be even more reliant on privately-owned vehicles with less transit infrastructure. With rates starting at $5/hour including gas and insurance, the people of Squamish now have a carsharing option to help cut their transportation costs significantly. Modo is committed to investing in alternative and sustainable transportation in communities around BC, including smaller regions like Squamish which are often underserved by corporate providers.
Another affordable option for residents is the opportunity to use rideshare services such as Poparide to offset the cost of longer trips. The Vancouver-Squamish-Whistler route is currently the most popular amongst Modo members looking to fill their extra seats and save even more money, by combining carsharing and ride-sharing.
The co-op already has some local members, including Karen Berrisford, Squamish resident and MEC Store Manager, who has used the service elsewhere and is encouraged by the move. “I have used Modo for work and recreation. It is convenient and easy to use,” says Berrisford. “Having Modo in Squamish will be a great addition to our community.”
With an additional 16 Modo vehicles on the North Shore, including two at the Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal, and 600 in the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island and the Okanagan, residents of Squamish will now have access to affordable, convenient and sustainable transportation when they need it, without the hassle and cost of car ownership.
Modo started in 1997 as the first carshare co-operative in the region. To this day, it remains member-owned, driven by people not profit. Modo provides its two-way, round-trip service, to more than 20,000 members and 800 businesses across the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island and the Okanagan. Members get access to over 600 cars, trucks, SUVs and vans, with rates starting at just $5 per hour, including gas and insurance. modo.coop
About the District of Squamish
The District of Squamish is the local municipal government authority, delivering municipal services to a community with a population of 19,893, which includes members of the Squamish Nation upon whose traditional territory we live and operate. Growth in the community has been unprecedented in recent years. Nestled between ocean, mountains, and major centres, the small-town setting, spectacular natural environment, and unmatched outdoor recreation make for a lifestyle and location for business investment few places can offer. The Official Community Plan is foundational in guiding the work of the dedicated elected Council and staff, and a strategic plan works towards balancing and achieving the four pillars of: open and enterprising government; a healthy community; economy; and environment.
Selena McLachlan, Director of Marketing & Communications
District of Squamish:
Rachel Boguski, Communications Coordinator
Download the media release here.