Car-share programs, those unique memberships with around-the-clock access to cars parked throughout urban neighborhoods, is starting to look good as a profit enterprise. I-GO was started five years ago by a Chicago non-profit as an experiment. Now it has 80 vehicles and adds more than 200 new members a month.
But there's also a for-profit car-sharing program called Zipcar that recently rolled into Chicago. Zipcar already has 110 cars in rotation and will double that number soon.

The competition in Chicago reflects a small but growing opportunity for car-share programs across the country. One researcher estimates just over 100,000 people share about 2,600 vehicles. Zipcar claims its members can save more than $435 month by using car sharing and not purchasing a car.

[Source: Lori Rackl / Chicago Sun Times]

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