Montreal car-sharing companies concerned over new regulations

Car sharing companies car2go and Communauto face new regulations from the City of Montreal, Tuesday, September 20, 2016. Global News

Montreal’s car-sharing companies, car2go and Communauto, are furious at Mayor Denis Coderre‘s administration for what they consider to be a hostile attitude towards the industry.

Car2go and Communuauto said recent changes to regulate the industry and introduce 100 per cent electric vehicles is hurting the car-sharing business.

At a news conference Tuesday, they said Montreal’s new directives on parking, permits and fleet numbers will prevent future growth and development.

The new regulations are creating an uncertain future for the business, according to car2go director general Jérémi Lavoie.

“It makes it very difficult to move forward,” Lavoie said.

“Our projects are on hold at this point because we don’t know what the conditions will be like. That’s unfortunate because, at the same time, the business is growing. We are now with 40,000 members in Montreal alone.”

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According to car2go spokesperson Zoé Lajoie, the city wants to limit the number of car-sharing vehicles to 1,000.

Lajoie added the city has also taken over permit distribution from the boroughs.

Hybrid and gasoline vehicles with mechanical failures are not certain to be replaced because the companies would have to re-apply for a permit with the city, according to the spokesperson.

Between the two companies, there are currently more than 1,000 vehicles, Lajoie said.

Communauto CEO and founder Benoit Robert is also concerned with changes in parking permit regulations.

Car-sharing users would have to pay 30 per cent more for parking permits.

“Someone who owns a car in Montreal can buy [a permit] for roughly $100,” Robert said.

“Why would people who decide to be part of the solution and decide not to own a car – why would they have to pay more than their share?”


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