Zipcar day at TwoFiveTrees

// Experiment with car sharing Dec. 1 as volunteers chauffeur shoppers home with their trees

TwoFiveTrees may only be a few years old, but this holiday tradition has quickly become a much-loved addition to downtown Tacoma, transforming the usually deserted Tollefson Plaza into a winter wonderland. This year, organizer Justin Mayfield is raising the bar yet again by partnering with Zipcar Inc. to help shoppers who use public transportation or opt to go carless. On Dec. 1, volunteers will be chauffeuring people home for free in one of Tacoma’s own Zipcars if they choose to walk or use public transportation. Mayfield also serves as executive director of Local Life, an organization aimed at promoting walkable, desirable and unique neighborhoods, and sees car sharing as an important aspect of this mission. “This is an opportunity for Tacomans to experiment with car sharing for free,” Mayfield said. “Zipcar provides a great option for people who choose to walk, but use a car only when they really need it. They don’t have to worry about insurance, maintenance, or gas – they pay the hourly fee and they’re done.”

The Zipcar program landed in Tacoma in September, with six cars parked throughout downtown, and four in other parts of the city. These cars are located in on-street parking spots easily accessible by public transportation. “We feel this program is providing something necessary for a local way of life, and they’re doing some great things,” Mayfield said. TwoFiveTrees is also partnering with Northwest Leadership Foundation’s Proteen initiative, bringing volunteers on board to help out throughout the season. The organization will receive 50 percent of the profits from tree sales throughout the year. The organization works with at-risk teens, providing mentorship, activities and overall guidance to local youth. “They’re having a great time so far, and they’ve brought a great sense of community to TwoFiveTrees,” Mayfield added.

For more information about TwoFiveTrees, visit http://www.locallifetacoma.org.

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