A Pacoima nonprofit will be experimenting with an electric vehicle “car-sharing” program as a way to give families in the northeast San Fernando Valley an additional way of getting around.
Fifteen families in Pacoima will be part of a one-year pilot program in which two electric vehicles owned by the company, Envoy, will be made available to them as car-share rental options.
The pilot program is being run by Pacoima Beautiful, and being funded by a $100,000 grant from the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator. The aim of the program is to test out membership and payment models, and to better understand the barriers to families in the area adopting electric vehicles.
As far as whether there is a need for a rental program — the “sharing” terminology is somewhat of a misnomer, as the cars are owned by a company — Veronica Padilla, executive director of Pacoima Beautiful, many people in Pacoima rely on public transit, drive cars that may not be very dependable (they could break down), or are sharing one or two cars with other family members.
“Moms that are at home have to wait for husbands to come home to go do a purchase or have to ask for a ride (from neighbors) to take their kids to go to the doctor,” Padilla said.
The need for more options is part of the reason grocery stores in the area often offer van service to their customers, she said.
Details on how the program will work is still being figured out, with Envoy setting the pricing, according to Padilla.
The program is also aimed at cutting down on sources of air pollution in Pacoima, which has some of the area’s worst air quality.
Barring any potential delays, their goal is to start the program as early as January, Padilla said.
Associated Program: Pacoima Electro-Ride Share