BY LINDA BAKER
My daughter turned 18 last week, and for her birthday I got her a Car2Go membership. Not to label myself a disruptor or anything, but it felt like a groundbreaking moment. The two of us, mother and child, were participating in a new teen rite of passage: Instead of handing over the car keys, I handed over a car-sharing card — with the caveat that she not use the gift as her own personal car service.
BY LINDA BAKER
My daughter turned 18 last week, and for her birthday I got her a Car2Go membership. Not to label myself a disruptor or anything, but it felt like a groundbreaking moment. The two of us, mother and teen, were participating in a new rite of passage: Instead of handing over the car keys, I handed over a car-sharing card — with the caveat that she not use the gift as her own personal car service.
This modern-day gift exchange coincided with our cover story this month about growing a new generation of mobility companies in Oregon. As most people know, this state is a leader in figuring out how to move people around more efficiently: from light rail to bike lanes to streetcars. Now there’s a new set of transportation players in town, and they don’t follow the rules that governed an earlier generation of multimodal pioneers.
As we go to press, the city of Portland is rewriting the regulations that will allow ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft to operate legally in the city. Local mobile-ticketing startup GlobeSherpa continues to rack up transit agency clients around the country. Bike-share startup Open Bike Inc. aims to disrupt the conventional bike-share model before the latter even gets off the ground in Portland.
How can Oregon continue to nurture these companies while ensuring basic infrastructure, like buses and bike lanes, continues to grow? What are the market and regulatory challenges and opportunities associated with growing the next generation of mobility services?
Read the article to find out. And be sure to register for our related panel discussion: “Tech in Transit: Will Portland Build the next Uber?” The event, to take place in the KeyBank Club-Providence Park on April 21, marks the debut of our exciting new breakfast series: “Hot Topics/Cool Talks.” Each month we will bring together a few of the innovators and business and thought leaders featured in the magazine for a lively panel discussion on the people, trends and technologies driving change in our culture and economy.
Look for Hot Topics events coming to locations around the state. To register, visit oregonbusiness.com/events. In the meantime — not to be a boastful parent, but it turns out my daughter is a leader in her age group. According to Car2Go spokesperson Dacyl Armendariz, 465 Oregon members joined the car-sharing service at age 18, and that number is growing over time.
Welcome to the new mobility generation.