Oak Bay features two Modo cars in action already as the company looks to build. (modo.coop)

Oak Bay features two Modo cars in action already as the company looks to build. (modo.coop)

Car share company seeks tweaks to be more viable on Oak Bay streets

Bylaws limit commercial parking abilities, impacts membership growth

Oak Bay staff will look into a couple of requests by a car share company to tweak municipal policy to allow the company to operate better in the community.

In a presentation Jan. 17, Modo asked the district to update bylaws to allow for better station-based car sharing.

The company operates two cars in the community and 77 in Victoria. Currently there is a lot of demand for one of the two local vehicles, Modo director of business development Sylvain Celaire told council members.

The company, available in 25 municipalities across B.C., seeks three specific changes that would help it expand membership in Oak Bay and also make things easier on other car share organizations.

Modo asked Oak Bay to consider establishing a point of contact on municipal staff for matters related to car sharing; adapt the official community plan to allow station-based sharing; and to explore opportunities for assisting car share operators to use zero emission vehicles in the district. Modo is committed to a zero-emission fleet by 2030.

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Celaire said municipalities can take a leadership role by developing land-use and parking policies that make it convenient for residents to car share, such as having parking available at a reasonable walking distance and ensuring car sharing is integrated in its transportation management programs.

While the OCP supports car sharing, there are some limitations the company hopes Oak Bay will address. The Modo model is a two-way car share where all vehicles have a home location. That means cars are dubbed commercial, and Oak Bay’s zoning bylaw limits commercial vehicle parking. The streets and traffic bylaw restricts commercial vehicles parked on the road, and regulates how long a vehicle can remain parked on a street.

They’d like to see round-trip car sharing added as an option in the OCP section outlining transportation demand requirements for new developments.

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Council, sitting as committee of the whole, tasked staff with coming back with a report on the three requests.

Council generally meets three Mondays a month. Find the full meeting schedule, and how to participate, online at oakbay.civicweb.net.

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