In order to raise standards of living, cities don’t always have to focus on attracting businesses or raising wages. Cities could get a lot of mileage out of expanding bus routes and doing things that make families less likely to need their least used vehicle. SLC, for example, can provide a substantial boost to living standards if it makes it easier for the average family to own just one car instead of two (as car ownership costs ~$5,000/yr). Enterprise Car Share, which is firmly established in Salt Lake City, is helping provide such a boost.
How this works is that about 12 Enterprise cars are scattered about downtown SLC (and elsewhere along Wasatch Front) and are available to rent on an hourly or daily basis. SLC locations:
It's not only convenient for those downtown, but also super easy to use. Here are the steps:
- Sign up online so they can send you a membership card
- Reserve a car online
- Use the membership card to open the door
- When done, return the car to where you picked it up
And all fuel, insurance, and 200 miles/day are included in the hourly rates:
Conveniences like this are natural features of Salt Lake City proper (and big cities everywhere). Combining this, the Hive Pass, and substantial public transit options means that living in the city doesn't have to be more expensive than living in the suburbs. SLC should tout these kind of benefits more, and combine it with an abundant supply of housing to provide an unbeatable value proposition for residents (both current and prospective).