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Promoting car pooling and its integration with public transport

Toulouse

Improved integration in the existing public transport network and ticketing system, along with the use of dedicated communication and reservation tools were considered key factors for success in expanding the city’s car-pooling scheme.

Implementing sustainable mobility

In 2004, the inhabitants of the Toulouse conurbation made 3,635,000 trips a day, 64 percent of which were by private car with, on average, 1.27 people per car. At the time of measure implementation, car pooling was not common practice, although the public transport authority Tisseo recognised the opportunity to develop car pooling as a complementary service to public transport in order to achieve a reduction in private vehicle traffic.

In August 2003, the not-for-profit car-pooling association COVOITUVAL had been set up by volunteers in the south east of Toulouse, to which the public transport authority Tisseo and another local authority gave financial support in November 2003. This enabled the association to invest in the development of sophisticated software to identify car-pooling teams.

The measure was therefore designed to:

  • improve the efficiency of the existing car-pooling activities of the non-profit organisation;
  • propose an integrated solution between public transport and car-pooling solutions; and
  • create, in the public authority structure, a dedicated service to manage and promote car pooling as a complementary service to public transport.
How did the measure progress?

To launch the measure, in mid-2005 Tisseo requested an exhaustive study of the COVOITUVAL car-pooling activities, to analyse its strengths and weaknesses and put forward ideas for its development. The study highlighted the need to reinforce its links with Tisseo and to promote COVOITUVAL by focusing on company managers and employees.

In September 2005, a mobility centre was set up by Tisseo and other local authorities in a large business area on southeast Toulouse, offering public transport information and mobility advice. The COVOITUVAL staff and website were integrated into this centre, giving them an official status. During the MOBILIS project, over 20 companies contracted COVOITUVAL to set up and manage their car-pooling volunteer database.

What were the outcomes of the measure?

Between February 2005 and December 2007, the number of registered users rose from 194 to 1,866. Among those registered, 17 percent use car pooling on a daily basis. For this period, it can be estimated that some 1,600,000 car kilometres were avoided, with a saving of 340,000 kg of carbon dioxide equivalents.

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