If you Could Trade in your Car for Eternal Free Mass Transit, Would You?

Us New Yorkers are not likely to be faced with this question any time soon, although CISC’s philanthropic founder did commission an exceptional report on the merits of free mass transit and what it could potentially do for our city.

But the near half million residents of Murcia, Spain got to ponder this offer quite recently. Congestion and parking woes had gotten so out of hand in the city that public officials decided that if people were willing to trade in their cars by the end of June, they would get free tram passes for life. This was step 1 in a 3 part campaign to get people thinking outside their cars. Step 2 included public displays of the dismantling of cars that were turned in and step 3 included automobile installations such as the one featured here, that highlighted just how hard it was to park.  They also created some fun PSAs to get the word out.

I haven’t found any numbers on how many people actually took advantage of the trade-in. Will keep on the hunt for that. But one thing is clear to me: In the age of marketing, they used an innovative, provocative and fun campaign to get people thinking about this personal decision with a collective impact. Image via Fast Company.

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