EDMOND — The University of Central Oklahoma is the first place in the state to offer a car-share program where rental cars are available on campus for students and Edmond residents. The UCO program operates like programs found in New York City and Chicago, allowing vehicles parked at specified locations to be rented by the hour or longer. Four cars are now stationed at two locations on campus waiting for a student who needs to go to a doctor’s appointment or wants to go on a date or to the mall. The cars also are handy for a student who carpools to the Edmond campus and has to go home to check on a sick child during the day. Tim Tillman, the university’s alternative transportation coordinator, said the new program shows the university’s dedication to sustainability and innovation. "We are very happy to be the first in the state to offer a program like this which will not only save environmentally, but will also save space on campus,” Tillman said. Renters must go to connectbyhertz.com and fill out an application. It might take a couple of weeks to complete he initial sign-up process. The driver’s license must be verified and a membership card must be received through the mail. The university has teamed up with Connect by Hertz to provide the car-share program that just started at the beginning of the semester. Four 2010 vehicles are available to rent for $6.80 to $8 an hour, depending on the car booked and the driving plan selected. The hourly rate includes gas and insurance. UCO’s program allows drivers as young as 18. Sarah Johnson, a UCO freshman and the university’s first Connect by Hertz customer, rented a car to use while moving out of her parents’ Edmond home and into campus housing. "Since I live on campus and my family is close, I do not need to own a car,” said Johnson, 18. "There’s no point in letting a car sit while still having to keep up with the payments and gas, so this program will definitely help me save money and worry.” She also has used one of the cars to go to Moore for her job. Tillman also uses the rental cars. He sold his car over the Christmas break and will depend on the rental cars and his bicycle because he lives six blocks from campus. "I averaged about $600 to $700 a month to own and maintain a car I was using once or twice a week for a couple of hours,” Tillman said. "It just makes sense to pay $8 an hour.” Brian Buswell, Hertz’ application consultant, said each of the rental cars frees up 13 parking spaces on campus. The Hertz program stated at Ohio State University and has now spread to at least 14 other campuses plus other cities in the United States and abroad. "The difference with the UCO program is that it is available for the public to use, too,” Buswell said. "That doesn’t happen anywhere else.”
To learn more
For more information about the car-share program, call Tim Tillman at 974-2786 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
UCO freshman and the university’s first Connect by Hertz customer