Reporting on pedestrian life in the D.C. area

The Zipvan is rolling into D.C.

March 28, 2012 - 09:15 AM
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(Photo: Zipcar)

Just as Zipcar's car-sharing competition goes small, its own vehicles are going big.

Behold the "Zipvan," Ford E-150 full size cargo vans that Zipcar will be adding to Washington, D.C.'s fleet of 800 or so cars. Boston and the District will receive 15 of these cargo-movers now that the company's recent pilot program in San Francisco has concluded successfully. The cost: $15.75 an hour, $109 a day for 230 cubic square feet of cargo space. Vans will be available, according to Zipcar, "on Rhode Island Ave and 4th Avenue NE, at the Columbia Heights Metro and at Courthouse Metro in Virginia."

Would you choose a Zipvan over U-Haul? These new vehicles are targeted at people who have to move a lot of stuff, and the announcement makes a special mention of space for a queen-size mattress and furniture trips to IKEA. Up to 2,500 pounds of cargo can fit into these vans. But a 10-foot U-Haul truck, which is about the same length as one of these Zipvans, will only run you about 20 bucks plus the charges per mile and the gas. The overall U-Haul cost for a full day of moving typically doesn't run much over $100, in my experience, although a Zipvan may successfully brand itself as a cooler alternative for less intensive (but still big enough) trips.

As residents of both an expensive (read: lots of renters) as well as transient city, the people of D.C. certainly change addresses enough. We'll see. Learn more here.

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