Our Case to #defendsharing

This morning SideCar filed a lawsuit against the City of Austin. We don’t think ridesharing is in violation of Austin’s Transportation Code and we’ve asked the court to decide so we can bring the benefits of rideshare to the citizens of Austin.

The future of rideshare in Austin is at stake. Help us #defendsharing and sign our petition on Change.org.

SideCar v. The City of Austin, Texas

We believe the Austin Transportation Department has misinterpreted its City Code and that rideshare is legal and protected under Austin transportation law. We’re going to defend this in court because:

  • SideCar is not a transportation service. SideCar is a technology platform that enables peer-to-peer ridesharing.
  • The City Code regulates “chauffeured vehicles”. We don’t own or operate vehicles, dispatch drivers or mandate shifts.
  • The City Code regulates “chauffeured vehicles” for a fee. Members of the SideCar rideshare community pay what they want and it’s voluntary.
  • SideCar is protected under federal law.

If the City of Austin moves forward with impounding the vehicles of our rideshare community, we think they’re the ones breaking the law.  

This lawsuit is bigger than Austin, Texas. What happens here matters for the entire sharing economy. Sharing resources is not a crime – it’s a solution for a better and more sustainable way of life. Rideshare is good for Austin and we’re going to defend this position in Austin City Court.

Keep updated on SideCar in Austin, follow us on Twitter:  @sidecarATX

Ride On Austin!

Sunil Paul
SideCar Technologies, Inc.

6 responses to “Our Case to #defendsharing”

  1. Michael Polacheck says :

    I hope you will be able to reach an agreement with the city of Austin. My hope is Sidecar can create an alternative to daily commuter driving, which is by far the most costly, inefficient and unsustainable aspect of modern urban life.

    The challenge to promoting commute carpooling is in recognizing and capturing the many kinds of externalized costs of private auto transportation. These external costs range from local (road construction and maintenance, real estate costs, emergency services, pollution, traffic congestion) to global (climate change, war and economic instability). Transportation alternatives can never become widely popular without accounting for these externalized costs, which make auto driving the most heavily subsidized activity in our society.

    To make commute carpooling practical, a system must be developed to reclaim a portion of the externalized costs of the cars that are taken off the road. This will require the cooperation of local governments, agencies and businesses, but a strong case can be made that utilizing the value of millions of auto trips will result in a high return on investment to all the parties involved.
    While the challenge of organizing the cooperation needed for success in this type of strategy is considerable, the potential value of such a system can be seen as the equivalent of an oil well in every driveway (without the pollution).

    I think that cooperation between the private and public sectors to solve the problems of urban transportation can be achieved. I hope these ideas will be of interest to you and I look forward to discussing them in greater detail. Thank you for your attention.

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