Up to 80 on-street and
80 off-street parking stalls will be set aside for lease
by car-share companies
under a bill passed by the Honolulu City Council Wednesday.
Car-share vehicles are those rented to motorists for between an hour and
a day at a time. Bill 19 won
7-2 approval, with members Kymberly Pine and Heidi Tsuneyoshi voting “no.”
Mayor Kirk Caldwell is
expected to sign the bill.
Administration officials have hailed ride-sharing as one more alternative mode of transportation for Oahu residents who want to avoid the expense of owning a car.
But the bill also drew opposition from those worried the new program will gobble up high-demand parking spaces and possibly lead to a monopoly of stalls by companies with political influence.
Under the bill:
>> A car-sharing organization will pay annual rent of $2,475 for an on-street stall in downtown Honolulu (including the civic center and Capitol District); $4,380 annually for on-street stalls in Waikiki and $1,350 annually for on-street stalls elsewhere on the island.
>> A car-sharing organization will pay annual rent of $3,150 for an off-street stall in downtown city parking lots including Alii Place, Harbor Court, Kukui Plaza and and $2,100 annually per stall in the Kaimuki municipal lot and Kapalama Hale.
>> No more than two
on-street car-sharing stalls would be allowed on any street block, and stalls with tow-away hours will not be designated as car-sharing stalls.
>> Vehicles designated
by the car-sharing company to use a stall must have a sticker affixed, issued by the city for $20 apiece. The fine for parking illegally in a reserved car-sharing stall would be $100.
Rules for the program must still be adopted by the Department of Transportation Services. Typically, it takes a city agency between six months to a year to go through the process of adopting rules, which would include a public hearing and public comment period.
Elefante, who introduced the bill along with Councilman Joey Manahan, said
major cities including New York City, San Francisco, Boston and Portland already have dedicated on-street parking stalls for car-sharing use.
Each car-share vehicle can take nine to 13 cars off the road, “freeing up more parking for everyone and
reducing our carbon emissions here in our city,” Elefante said.
Julie Yamamoto, a representative for Hui Car Share, told Council members that her company gives people who cannot afford a car “a means to get one mainly to get somewhere that a public transportation system does not support right now.”
“Our customers are asking for accessible, convenient and affordable locations within walking
distance of where they live and work,” Yamamoto said.
Hui Car Share is a subsidiary of Servco Mobility Labs.
Hui marketing manager Kristine Wada said after
the meeting that the company operates nearly
100 vehicles out of 40 private stations from Ko Olina to Kaimuki, with many of them in Waikiki, downtown Honolulu and Kakaako. Costs run from $9.95 an hour to $79.60 a day, including gasoline and insurance, Wada said.
During public testimony, Halawa resident Sharlene Chun-Lum said the Council should consider charging the companies a higher rate because her calculations show the car-sharing stalls would bring the city only 25% what it would potentially net if it charged the public $3 an hour.
“Depending on where these stalls are located, the potential loss to the city
exceeds $1.5 million, and that loss doesn’t include what the city could make
in fines for expired meters,” Chun-Lum said. “They will have prime spaces in prime locations, saving them the cost of the building or leasing of their own parking lot to house 160 cars.”
The city has not yet
determined where the designated on-street stalls for car-
sharing will be, said Transportation Services Director Wes Frysztacki. That would be determined and finalized during the rule-making process, Elefante said.
That didn’t sit well with Tsuneyoshi. “You’re asking us to pass the bill when you don’t have the specifics,” she said.
Frysztacki said “our intent is to try to find new locations that are currently not ones that are available for normal on-street parking and could, in fact, be used for reserved car-sharing spaces.”
Kobayashi said she’s
worried that a company
will be allowed to use up city stalls for free, as the
Biki bike-sharing program has been allowed to do.
Frysztacki said the Biki program is a pilot project that is using on a temporary basis “about 30-some odd on-street parking spaces that were previously
“It’s our intention, ultimately, to equalize what these different organizations are being charged,” he said, noting the actual meters have not been removed from the stalls Biki now
The amounts to be
paid per stall by the car-
sharing operators would
be significantly more than the monthly rates charged to the general public,