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Cost and benefi ts in the proposed approach from increasing car use

While decreases in car use have benefi ts, increases will incur increased external costs. The approach here has thus been to make an assessment of the net change in vehicle mileage from the current mix of car club members.

In addition to transfer from existing car use and ownership there will a value in making a trip that could not be made before or was too diffi cult to make. While the number of such trips can be estimated, their value is far more diffi cult to measure. In the longer term, the value is clearly equal to or greater than the cost of the car club to the user – this is why it will in most instances become a self-suffi cient operation.

The social and economic value of this increased travel is hard to measure, and is not included in the BCR calculator. As discussed earlier, the diffi culties of monetising such benefi ts mean they are not included in current appraisals, although they can be estimated and should be reported. Some of the car club bids examined for this report already include similar assessments – for example fi t with other economic and social policies.

In some instances there may be lost revenue for bus operators, but there will be balancing gains from the mixed mode patterns of travel. The data from the Carplus survey suggests there would be a net gain in bus use. While reviewing the issue for completeness, we do not consider it necessary to calculate such costs and benefi ts in terms of this current proposal.

Thus the only costs from increased car use included are from the increased external costs. This is achieved by use of the net reduction in vehicle miles per member. This explains why the fi gure is lower than studies which quote decreases only. To be fair to them, if car use is predicted to grow over time, the increases with the car club would in fact have been substantially higher without the car club. For this report the conservative approach of using net reductions has been used.

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