A car2go waits expectantly for its next user at the Minneapolis - St. Paul border (the car is in Minneapolis, the Weyerhaeuser warehouse at the end of the block is in St. Paul)

Border effects – Why my neighborhood is rich in car2go

A car2go waits expectantly for its next user at the Minneapolis - St. Paul border (the car is in Minneapolis, the Weyerhaeuser warehouse at the end of the block is in St. Paul)
A car2go waits expectantly for its next user at the Minneapolis – St. Paul border (the car is in Minneapolis, the Weyerhaeuser warehouse at the end of the block is in St. Paul)

In economics, there are many border effects associated with tax and regulatory policies. People shop in X (Oregon) and live in Y (Washington) to avoid sales or income taxes. But sometimes these are just small effects.

In my neighborhood, abutting the City of St. Paul, we are rich in Car2go vehicles, because car2Go operates in Minneapolis and not St. Paul. Thus to legally park and check out of your car, you must leave it on a Minneapolis city street. Residents just across the City Line can still sign up for Car2Go, and have, they just park a block or two away in Minneapolis, giving us the benefits of their membership – more cars within walking distance, and the curse of additional parked cars in our fair city.

Car 2 Go map, showing preponderance of cars near the city line.
Car 2 Go map, showing preponderance of cars near the city line.

Like I said, it’s not a big deal, but it is noticeable and interesting, and probably temporary as CAR2GO spreads virally across the border.