Friday Question of the Day – Do You Own a Car and/or a bicycle?

Photo by PoPville flickr user Phil

I feel like we’ve been talking a lot about a parking over the last few months so I’m really just curious – how many folks out there own a car? Do you park on the street or in a garage/parking space? How long have you had a car? How often do you use it? For me I had a car, then I sold my car, then I had a baby and got a car again (I know that angers some but I’m just being honest.) And because this is how my brain works – I’m now curious how many folks own a bicycle too? (I also own a bike.) For those that own both – which do you use more frequently? (I’d say I probably walk/metro more than I use the bike or car.)

Ed. Note: We’ve previously spoken about how we commute to work here.

113 Comment

  • west_egg

    Yes, I own a car. Mom & dad bought me a (very) used car shortly after I got my learner’s permit many years ago and I’ve been a driver ever since. I’ve parked on the street for most of my 11 years in DC but currently have a parking pad out back, which is awfully convenient I must say. I use it for grocery shopping and other errand-running, occasionally to work downtown (I’ll usually take the train but I occasionally work weird/long hours) and to/from my S.O.’s in the ‘burbs.
    I tried biking, I really did, but being in such close proximity to huge machines piloted by oblivious people scared me off. Upshot: Taught me a lot about how bikers perceive drivers and improved my own driving in that regard.
    P.S. That anyone should be “angered” by PoP (or anyone) buying a car after having a kid (or for any other reason) is just…sad.

  • gotryit

    I own a car (minivan – kids and that jazz) and a bike. My wife uses the car more often and I bike (and metro) almost exclusively. Traffic and parking is just too much for me.
    Thankfully I have a driveway and (eventually) a garage, but street parking is usually fine by me (16th st heights).

  • I’m in the “own car and bike” category.
    My sister gave me her old car 4 years ago; I drive it 2-3 times a month. Most of my driving is to visit my elderly father (or to transport pup or plants), and I have parking at my house.
    My bike is my main transport; if not biking then bus or metro.

  • Wife and I have a car and I’m the bike guy.
    She needs hers for work while my work commute is easy enough by walking, bus, Metro, biking (currently, walking). On the weekends, unless we’re leaving the District, we don’t use the car much and rely on Metro or Uber (there’s generally drinking involved). Personally, this city is so small, getting from place to place via bike (if the weather is nice) is just fine for me.

  • Both. I too bought the car as a baby accessory four years ago. Now I use it once a month to go to Costco for huge bales of diapers etc. and once a year for the family vacation. The bike I use to commute, shop, drop my kid at school, go to meetings, etc. every day. It’s also great for exploring the city and all the many parks and fun spots with my almost 4 year old. Don’t do a lot of metro and bus, not sure why.

  • Selling my car over 3 years ago and doing without was the best decision ever. Even with a private garage space, having a car just didn’t make sense — I rarely used it. I live 2 blocks from U Street Metro and either walk or Metro everywhere. In this neighborhood, there’s just little need for a car. I’ve joined ZipCar and Car2Go but only use those few times a year. My advice: No car needed.

    • justinbc

      It depends a lot on the neighborhood. When I lived in Logan Circle, or now in Capitol Hill, I can easily get by without one. But if I were in Palisades, Michigan Park, etc somewhere less Metro accessible I wouldn’t want to rely solely on the bus being on time.

      • palisades

        Yeah a car is 100% necessary here. Also, it’s free, we have a parking lot in the back of our building.

        • I live in the Palisades, but my wife and I both bike commute daily. While we do have a car and a driveway, we only use it to head out of town, maybe once every 2-3 weeks. Grocery shopping is done with a bike and a trailer, as are liquor store runs. I honestly couldn’t imagine getting in a car on a daily basis, as I absolutely detest driving and traffic is always terrible. The car is, unfortunately, slowly deteriorating in the driveway from the lack of use, but it is paid off, so…

    • I think if everyone lived as you did, your advice would be applicable.

  • Gave up my vehicle 20+ years ago because I thought parking was bad then. Never regretted.

  • I own a car but rarely use it. It’s nice to have for big shopping trips, day trips to wine country, weekend getaways etc. I bought it to commute to VA, but am back working in the District so am back to using Metrobus for work (I hate the metro). Too chicken sh*t to ride a bike in this city, I’ve heard/seen too many terrible things.

  • justinbc

    I don’t own a car or bike, but I do use BikeShare, and my partner owns a car since she has to commute out of the city. I had a car for the first several years when I lived in the area, out in Virginia, but not long after moving into the city I sold mine and haven’t regretted it since. Since she’s been deployed I do use hers for trips to the grocery store, gym, etc, but it’s certainly not necessary. Parking on our block really isn’t an issue, most of the time I can find a space literally right in front of the house (unless it’s late on a Friday or Saturday). We do have the idiots who go around leaving notes on cars, as was previously documented here.

  • We have both, with a private spot for the car, but it’s easier to park on the street, so we typically circle once for a convenient spot, which we’ll find about 50% of the time. I rarely if ever drive during the week – walk or metro to work, with intermittent car2go usage thrown in, but my wife uses it daily to get my daughter to school. Bike is really more for recreation, with a little commuting/errand running in nice weather.
    Also, “then I had a baby and got a car again (I know that angers some but I’m just being honest.)” Really, people get angry about this? That’s ridiculous. Is it possible to get by in the city with a kid and without a car? Yes, it is. Is it remotely convenient? No, especially in an era of charter schools and OOB placements, where kids are often not within walking distance of their schools. Plus, when they get older, there are the countless after-school and weekend activities (many of which are not provided by DC schools) – soccer, dance, gymnastics, ice-skating, piano, chorus just to name a few. Could we get to all of them via mass transit? Sure. But the most scarce resource we have is time, and I’m not willing to waste hours per day in transit when there’s another option. Anyone who give you a hard time about owning a car after you have a kid (or any time, really) isn’t worth the time it would take to craft an (exceedingly rude) response.

  • jim_ed

    We have 2 (!) cars currently, and I also own a bike. I work in the suburbs, so I use one car every day. The other is basically for emergencies/picking the kid up from daycare if I have to work late. We’ve only had two for about a year, and will be going back down to one in the near future. We street park, which is no problem in our neighborhood even though most houses have two cars. On the weekends, we’re a metrobus family.

  • I own a car and a bike, but I never use the bike. I drive to work outside the city so I need a car. I work earlier than most people so my reverse commute isn’t bad and I get back before a the street parking is taken. I can usually find a street spot within a block or so of my apartment.

    The thing that frustrates me the most is people who own cars and park them on the street but never drive/move them. Why would you own a car and have to pay insurance if you don’t ever drive it? Wouldn’t it be easier to rent/Car2Go/Zipcar whenever you need it instead of keep a car you never use?

    • “Why would you own a car and have to pay insurance if you don’t ever drive it? Wouldn’t it be easier to rent/Car2Go/Zipcar whenever you need it instead of keep a car you never use?”
      Perhaps cheaper, but not easier. But this raises a good point – underpriced RPP fees incentivize subsidized storage of private property in public space. Put less snottily, it’s too cheap to park a car in DC. RPP should be raised to, say, $30/month, which is still a LOT less than market rates and very reasonable.

      • Market rates in my neighborhood are not the same as in, for example, Columbia Heights. There’s plenty of parking where I live so $30/month is way too expensive. If you want to go for this “market rate” idea it should be done by parking zone, not citywide.

        • I would agree, but that’s not how our parking is zoned – they could change it and make it a smaller area, but then people in high density areas would have alot of trouble finding spaces in smaller zones. Also, in low density neighborhoods, most people have driveways and tons of money, so a higher fee would be a non-issue for many. Finally, there are many more people in the ‘high density areas’, and they would make a fuss and get this shot down if you had cheaper parking than them.

    • Columbia Rd west of 18th Street has countless vehicles that haven’t moved in months. I;m biased as a daily reverse commuter, but is “parking” the same as leaving your vehicle in the same spot for months on end? What I’m saying may sound like I’m entitled, but I can’t be the only one frustrated by this.

      • IMHO, because Adams Morgan is so easy to get to/from, the streets have basically become a glorified parking lot. I won’t complain too much because my bus can cruise along without much traffic and people trying to parallel park, but I can see the frustration as well. Maybe this would be a case where the cost of street parking could be increased? At least to discourage those who seemingly use their cars biannually…


  • 1 car, 2 people. And a dog. Street parking in Columbia heights is fine. We have an inconvenient, hardly-used, but good-to-have parking spot in case of emergencies. Husband and I carpool to work, which is 1/4 cost of metroing. As an Asian, the suburbs have what I need. I can never give up my car until Rockville, Annandale, & Falls Church get closer. Unfortunately the diversity I seek is all in the suburbs 🙁 Please can I get some authentic dumplings, cheap vegetables, and a hair salon?

  • Both the wife and I have a car, live in Cleveland Park next to the metro, and while both our jobs were metro accessible when we bought the house 8 years ago, that has since changed and we both drive to our suburban jobs. We have off street parking so atleast we don’t have to deal with that.

  • I have a car and a bike. I bought the car when I started part-time/distance grad school; it would have been a miserable slog without it. But, now I’m a bit too used to it and since moving to Parkview I drive to work almost every day, it’s about 20 minutes shorter than metro. I can also go dancing more easily with a car and can foster dogs. I was recently thinking when it dies I’ll save a ton and not get a new one, but honestly I think I probably will unless I get a job downtown.
    I have a beloved Panasonic bike, which I sadly almost never ride.

  • Live near Logan Circle, very happy without car or bicycle (got rid of both when I moved from Reston three years ago). Have Zipcar membership, but now use it only when I’m in Richmond visiting my Mom. Girlfriend lives out near Ballston, and she has a car.

  • emvee

    Car-free since I totaled my beloved old Corolla on black ice last February. I own a bike, but use bikeshare way more than my personal bike. I mostly get around via bikeshare, walking, or metrobus. For errands, I Zipcar or car2go. The only time I’ve missed car ownership is when my dog had to go to the emergency vet on a weekend and there were no Zipcars available. None of the five Uber drivers I called would take him and dogs aren’t allowed in car2gos. I, for one, would like to petition for Uber Pet.

  • I had been car free for 10 years until I inherited a car in October. I decided to keep the car (at least for the short term) so I can manage the estate in PA. I still haven’t really gotten used to having a car again, so I use it for errands on the weekend only. I Metro to work, and I have a bike and I Bikeshare membership which I use much more often in the spring and summer.

  • We both have a car and a bike. Since we both work in the suburbs and mine isn’t convenient to metro it makes sense to drive…it’d be about an hour on bus/metro, but driving only takes 25 minutes. However, I plan to get rid of mine in about a year in hopes that I find a new job/project in the city again! We have parking behind our house, but street parking is plentiful too and it’s not zoned.

  • Mug of Glop

    I own a car and I hate that I need to. I’ve lived in Columbia Heights and Logan, and parking isn’t so terrible given my work hours. I had a parking space in CoHi, but rarely used it in lieu of the street, and I’m all street parking now. I’d sell the thing in a minute if work were even remotely practical to get to by transit. (Total commute time right now is about 50-60 min/day versus at least double and probably close to triple that by transit.) I’d consider biking to work, but crossing the bridges is pretty frightening and I get pretty gross with even a moderate workout. I don’t own a bike, but will probably buy one come summer. Most places are pretty transit-accessible from Logan, though, so it’s not really a big priority.

  • brookland_rez

    I own a truck and I used to ride bicycles before I got into motorcycles. My truck sits parked most of the time. It’s definitely not a daily driver. It’s only for when I go out of town or need to get something at the store, or tow my motorcycle trailer. I use my motorcycle to go to work on and joy ride on the weekends. I use Metro when I need to get around downtown and the weather is bad or I want to go out drinking.

  • Bikeshare should be an option. I don’t “own” a bike, but I use one all the time…

    • +1
      I came here to say the same thing. I own a car (inherited from my grandmother) that I use on average once a week (although I drove it all the time when I first got it a few years ago…. it was my first car!) and a CapBi membership, which I use most days to commute to and from work. Parking in my corner of CoHi is generally not a problem. For the purposes of the poll I said I own a car and a bike… although when I did actually own a bike (before CapBi), I never rode it. Biking seems a lot more reasonable now that there are many more cyclists on the streets (which I think CapBi had a lot to do with).

  • I am 25 and, like many in my generation, never fully learned how to drive/got my license. I walk as much as possible, take the metro when I can’t walk, bike share when I’m headed in a direction that has bike lanes, and beg for rides from friends or family the rest of the time. It doesn’t feel inconvenient at all because I’ve never known anything else.

  • Accountering

    I own a car, drive to work every day, but prefer biking/public transit if possible. I also am a big proponent of increasing RPPs and costs of car ownership DRASTICALLY in the city. Any increased revenue should go directly to funding Metro/Bus/CaBi or just to increase the standard deduction which helps everybody.

  • saf

    Can’t answer the poll as it is. I own a car AND a motorcycle. Don’t have a bike, but we do have bikeshare memberships. Also smart trip cards.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    I have lived in the city since 1985 and have always had a car, though I have gone for weeks without one due to body work repair. I currently live at Union Row (14th and w) and a parking space came with my apartment. I own a Mini Cooper, which I bought in 2012, which has less than 4000 miles on it. I mostly use it for errands on the weekends. My mom lives at Riderwood so I need it to visit her. And as a single woman (now in my 60’s) I enjoy the freedom and security that have a safe and reliable auto bestows on me 🙂

  • Own two cars. One parked on-street in zone 1. One (antique Sunday driver) parked off-street further north in Petworth. Have owned vehicle for 13 of 15 years in DC. Most of that time I’ve owned a daily driver and an antique. Sometimes that antique just won’t start (bonus points for not starting in a spot that turns into a traffic lane at rush hour) and the parking police will scoop it up and take it somewhere. Small price to pay. As for the usefulness of having a car, I get out of town every 2-3 weeks.

    Own a bike. Outside of work hours between April and November, if I need to go any distance between 2 blocks and 20 miles, I’m on the bike.

    The best part about owning a car is that if you leave your bike at the bar overnight, you can drive back the next morning and grab the bike.

    Get a car. There’s a ton to see within 3 hour drive of DC. Just make sure to keep your car in good repiar, properly registered, legally parked.

  • Own a car and bike. Bike gets used every day. At my old apartment I had free indoor parking so I kept it. But it sat unused for six months and I forgot to start er up every now and then so the battery died. And it had half an inch of dirt/dust on it. And I only got it working again because I’ve moved and now it sits on the street and I keep thinking I should just donate the thing.

  • I have a car and a bike. I mostly bike to work, and take metro on the really ugly days. I use the bike for most travel around the city too. I recently had to replace my transmission and brakes on my car so I had to justify to myself why to keep the car and not just go car free. I realized that the big reason I need a car is the dog. It is really the only way to transport him. Car2go and Zip car were not a possibility as well as trains. I also like to get outta Dodge sometimes and go hiking and camping so a car comes in handy.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Started out with a car, but never used it, so gave it up. Don’t have a bike b/c walking and metro are easier to the places I go. Work is too far to bike, the grocery is too close to bike. I have a Car2Go membership and a private car service (Quotia Zelda) if I need a car. I have yet to use a Car2Go. I only really use the private car service when I go to my country home.

    • I Dont Get It

      I have a bike and 15 year old car that I park on the street. I wish I had a parking spot behind my house but at my end of the block there is only a walkway not an alley out back. Boo! I use the car on weekends to run errands but parking is a hassle if I don’t get back before 10:30 am. If my car needed an expensive repair I would get rid of it and go car-fee.

      I bought a bike last spring but have yet to ride it. I made a couple of rookie mistakes assembling it and somehow never got around to taking it to a bike shop. The bike stands behind a chair in the living room and mocks me every time I see it.

  • My wife and I own one car, one bike, two Capital Bikeshare memberships. We park the car in the street and the bike in the house. Both the car and the bike have a child seat for our 2-year old son.

    My main transportation is the bike, and my wife walks to most places (including her work, and our son’s daycare), as we chose to spend more on rent–but less on transportation–to be near her work. Our remaining trips are split between bikeshare, Metro, buses, and Uber/Lyft/Car2Go. Generally, our car is used 1-2 evenings a week, and 1-2 times per weekend, as well as for long distance trips.

  • i own both a car and more than one bike
    i work in VA so i drive there and also i drive to my parents or other family members homes in MD
    otherwise once my car is parked around cap hill i act as if I do not have a car
    literally NEVER drive it to get somewhere in d city & bike practically everywhere year round

    • I also had a motorcycle until it was totaled in a hit & run earlier this year that was kept in a garage behind the house

      • That sucks. What kind of bike?
        Did insurance not replace it for you?

        • Had a 2010 yami R1
          yea they cut me a check that was for more than what i bought the bike for
          im still in rehab though so i havent gotten another yet
          will most likely go after another crossplane R1 this winter though dependiong on how likely it is that i move to South Africa or not

  • 3 bikes and a car.

  • I have a car, but almost never use it, except to get groceries. I am very lucky that I live in an area with 2 or 3 unzoned streets, so I am able to keep my VA registration, which cuts down on costs for insurance and such. Mostly, I either walk places, uber, or use bikeshare.

    • Does it really cut down on insurance? My ex-GF moved from DC to Williamsburg, VA and she bitched that her insurance slightly increased. I guess there’s a lot more drunk driving in VA and driving more miles in the ‘burbs increases your risk of eventually getting into an accident.
      She recently moved out to Los Angeles and her insurance doubled 😡

    • Your very lucky that you haven’t gotten dinged with a ROSA violation to be honest.

      • Plus it’s not cheaper in Virginia. I saved about $125 over the year because yes my car insurance went up, but my personal property tax on my car went way down! And yeah, you’re going to get caught eventually.

      • You’re assuming he didn’t get the ROSA exemption. If he’s able to keep the car registered in VA it is quite possible he has a way to claim to be a resident.

  • I own a scooter and also have Car2Go and ZipCar memberships. The scooter is used for daily commuting (CoHi to K Street at rush hour in 8 minutes FTW!). I’m single, so the scooter is fine for grocery shopping too; I can tie down two full grocery bags onto my rear gear rack with bungee cords.
    I use Car2Go all the time on weekends, when I’m heading out to meet friends in the evening and know I will be drinking. Or if there’s inclement weather. ZipCar is used less frequently, usually for either picking up a Craigslist purchase or heading out to the ‘burbs for fun activities/ethnic food. Much much much cheaper than owning a car.
    I’ve been seriously considering buying a condo, though my budget will probably push me to less densely populated areas of the city (Petworth, Brookland, Palisades, etc). If that happens, I’d really like to buy a 70s era Mercedes diesel sedan in cash and will need parking for that. Those cars are built solid, engines last 300K+ miles, and they get 30+ mpg. I just want a fun weekend driver.

  • I had a car when I moved into DC proper 5.5 years ago. We have off-street parking. All the adults in my house have a bike. My wife and I walk & use public transit far more than we use bikes or the car, but like having the car for certain types of trips or shopping expeditions. My roommate drives daily for work, but she works near Baltimore.

  • Own a car, but passing it on soon. I’m considering the car free life, but love the convenience of driving. Random later night trips could easily be over 30 mins of waiting on bus or metro but only 10-15 mins of driving. Grocery shopping is far easier, and my gym is in Alexandria…not so far from metro, but it would take FOREVER!

    Also on the RPP issue: Prices should go up, but student and reciprocity prices should go down. The latter are $300+ $35 for the RPP…that’s a lot when residential is what $15.

    • A regular RPP is $35, not $15.

      • Thanks for the correction, but $35 doesn’t really change the sentiment of my post.

      • $35 is for two years though, right? This is one of my biggest problems with DC. An RPP should be $500 / year, and I don’t think there should be exceptions for the handicapped because everyone would just get a letter from their doctor. I guarantee the quality of life in DC would go up.

        • No — $35 for one year, $70 for two years.

        • maybe they could give out disabled parking permits like they do in NYC, where it took my almost a year to get approved — form completed by my doctor, examination by a city physician at bellevue, and then an in person interview at DOT to show them that I really was disabled.

          • Good point – I’d never heard of that. It might work. An additional requirement for me would that the vehicle itself must have specific handicapped features such as a ramp or pedal-less drive, otherwise plenty of people will just be driving cars registered in their grandmothers’ names. If they have to drive an Econoline with a joystick then they may be more inclined just to pay the fee like everyone else.

    • I agree that RPP should be raised, but I’m not sure why that requires the student and reciprocity price to go down.

  • Interesting question as just this week I started my own mini-research project. Basically, I’m spending the next 2-3 months recording the details of every time I drive – where I go, what I do, and – most importantly – whether the trip could have been done by bicycle instead of driving.

    I don’t drive much as it is – ride metro to work, bike or walk to run most errands, etc. But at times I am lazy or it is raining (and the car is so seductive when it is raining!), the errand is too far away or I honestly need to haul stuff which can’t be hauled on a bicycle like drywall or a load of 2×4’s. It’ll be interesting to see what the data tells me. I’m thinking it’ll motivate me to drive even less. I also suspect that the data will tell me that if I lived in a denser area, I wouldn’t need my car more than once a month or so.

    • There’s a map that came out this past year that can show you that info flat out. You put in your address, and it maps out the quickest way to get to other parts of the city. Of course, how fast you walk/drive/bike will be personal to you, but it’s a pretty accurate guideline if you don’t want to skip the research project. I forget where the map is, but maybe someone else will have a link.

  • I have a 7 1/2 year-old Hyundai with 56K miles on it that spends the majority of its time in the driveway behind my row house. I get along without it very well during my day-to-day city life (unless I need to buy something in bulk), and use it mainly to leave town, with regular car trips to visit family during the year. That 56K includes two cross-country vacations, so only 43K in regular use in that time. I estimate maybe a quarter of that was driving in DC, and that includes trips to Dulles and other outside-the-beltway locales.

    I don’t have a bike because the damage from Ultimate Frisbee to my knees makes riding one impossible.

    • Have we met? 15 year old Hyundai, 62k miles. Same usage pattern and row house. Cross country trips were for school (first west coast then midwest). Happily I quit ultimate while my knees were still good enough for biking, which I do. 🙂

      • Haha! We should form a club. Same usage pattern too! 17 year old Civic, 120K, bad knees from getting hit by a car years back but – thankfully and luckily – I can still ride a bike. 12K of my miles is from crossing the country for school…

  • I’ve got the car, two bikes, CaBi, and car2go. My preferred way to get places during the week is the bus or walking though. I have guilt over keeping the car but with a parking space I rationalize that it’s for vet trips, volunteering at ungodly early hours, and getting out of town with a bike. I appreciate having all the options as I can always choose the one that fits the situation.

  • Car owner here in SW DC. I would never give it up. Metro is too slow and unreliable to rely on. Plus, having a car allows me to explore all that that DC region has to offer whenever I want to. So many of my car-less friends live in their little NW bubbles but never see much of the other quadrants, let alone all the unique things to do in Nova, MoCo, or PG.

  • Own a car, park on the street. Use it to go camping, drive to family in the Midwest over holidays, and for various errands. I don’t strictly need it anymore, and really it would be cheaper to rent cars as needed, but I know myself, and that’s just one more obstacle to getting out of town. If I had to rent a car to drive to the mountains to go camping, I would do it far less often.

    Plus, having a car around this city can be really, really convenient. I lived in DC for 2 years without a car, but I was in grad school then and had the flexibility to spend hours using transit to run some awkward errands. Also, it’s hard to access good ethnic food in the metro area without a car.

  • I live in DC. I have a car and no bike. Car is parked in a private garage.
    I walk to work, generally use metro/car2go/cabs when going out in DC and mainly use the car for trips to the suburbs (i.e. to go to non-shitty grocery stores, CostCo, sports leagues, etc) So the car gets used 2-3 times a week, for maybe a total of 3,000 miles a year.

  • I own 1 car, 3 bikes (maybe 4 if you count the one i’m in the middle of building?), a scooter, and an annual bike share membership. I can’t remember the last time I rode the scooter, commute daily by bicycle, and drive my car to get out of the city on weekends, go to costco, etc. i considered getting rid of my car, but moved here 2 years ago from CA and the car was only a year old at the time, so I ended up keeping it. I park on the street (zone 2) and never have any problems finding parking in my area. The bikes are taking up WAY too much room in my apartment, but I can’t seem to stop acquiring new (used) bikes, let alone get rid of any of them.

  • I own a bike that is currently unrideable (in desperate need of a tune up and probably new tires.) I would like to get it fixed for possible bike commuting, but am leery about it beacuase of how dangerous riding during rush hour looks. I currently walk to work or Uber if I’m running late. There is no direct bus or Metro service from home to work, and any option I’ve researched would take longer and take me further out of my way. While I *can* honestly live without a car, I would get one if the insurance and parking were more affordable. Commuting to work would be a lot easier and cheaper with one, and it would be nice for errands and visiting my family in the burbs. .

  • Girlfriend and I both have cars and park on the street just off U. No issues with street parking except Friday and Saturday nights. We both commute out to Tysons unfortunately, so we both use them to get to work (Silver line is not an option). On the weekends we use one car for groceries, but rarely anything else. We would both give up our cars in a heart beat if it wasnt for needing them to commute.

    I have been debating getting a bike for the last year but dont have a place to store it. Both my girlfriend and I have bikeshare, which we use a lot, and we have Car2go.

    • Not really judging at all or anything, but just wondering if it would be possible for you and your GF to carpool if you both work in Tysons? Totally understand if you guys work different hours or something.

  • I own a car — about 9 years old, with 48,000 miles on it. At the time I bought it (to replace a previous car), I was living in Adams Morgan but working in Maryland.
    I now live near the Georgia Ave.-Petworth Metro and take Metro to work in the District. I park on the street most of the time; I have a parking space behind my house but it has a padlocked gate and is a pain to get into (especially when it’s cold and/or raining). And although the rat problem in the alley isn’t as bad now as when I moved in, I think my car is safer as far as wires being chewed when it’s parked on the street, rather than adjacent to the alley.

  • 1 car, driven 3-4 times a month to leave the city
    6 bikes, at least one ridden daily in the city

  • I used to own a car, but after it got hit while parked on the street 3 times in 2 years (all without a note) I sold it back to my parents. I borrow a car from time to time from my parents, usually around the holidays, so it’s easier to get to the far-flung destinations like Winchester or Brunswick.

    And while I don’t own a bike I have a CaBi membership.

  • I own both, if for some reason I ever had to choose between the two I would get rid of the car without hesitation. The car is a luxury that I’m lucky enough to afford and I use it maybe 2-3 times a week, I have plenty of street parking where I live. I originally bought the bike because I got fed up with taking the bus to and from work and all the time wasting and headaches that go along with that. The bike turned my commute from 45 minutes of hell on the X2 (to go 3 miles!) to 20 minutes of decent exercise on my way to work that is strangely relaxing even when dealing with Marlyand drivers on the road. Now I’m that guy who is constantly preaching to people the benefits of biking. Never thought I’d be that guy. Still don’t own any spandex though

  • Husband and I own a car (one car, two people). We rarely drive it – it mostly sits around. We just use it when we have to go somewhere not metro/walking/biking accessible.

    We also both own bikes. I have a lower-end road bike that I ride mostly on weekends and sometimes use bikeshare for getting to work. Husband owns (sigh) 5 bikes and is (sigh) in the process of getting a sixth.

  • Car free for ten years but have two bikes, bike share, zip car, and car2go. I’m contemplating a Vespa in 2015 as I’m not home enough or dependent upon a car to own one.

  • No car, no bike, have lived in DC for just over 20 years. I was an early Zipcar user (since 2002, I think) but I hardly even use that anymore. Peapod grocery delivery and Amazon have made car-free living a lot easier…

  • Two kids and no car. My wife uses Metro to get to work, and I bike to work. We don’t own any cars. I use Bikeshare sometimes and we have ZipCar for trips out of the city, mostly to grandparents in MD.

  • I have both a car and a bike. We actually never use the bikes but I walk pretty much everywhere I need to go (Harris Teeter, Whole Foods, Target Mall, etc.). I bought the car in 1989 (it’s a Honda) and I used to keep it well maintained but I’ve fallen off over the past few years. Repairs have gone up due to the fact that it’s so old that it’s hard to find parts for it. I use it for Costco runs, going to the movies in Silver Spring or visiting family in Maryland and VA and running other errands. I walk back and forth to work (I would never drive it to work) or catch the bus. My house has parking so I never have to worry about finding a space. It stays parked most of the time (but I drive it to work on the weekends as I have a part-time job. I get off at 11:00 and I don’t want to be catching the bus or walking home at 11:30 in the dark, cold, snow or rain. It’s nice to have but I’m really thinking about getting rid of it because it costs so much to maintain (gas, insurance, repairs) and just using the Zip Car. Family member comes down from West Virginia every few weekends and uses our City parking sticker to park on the street.

  • Tell that to the many adults in this city who do just fine on a bike, thank you very much.

  • (My first comment seems to have been deleted. I’ll be less snarky this time.)

    Two cars, no bikes. Can’t fathom getting around town on a bike and doing all the things you need to do with three middle-school aged kids.

    Street park most of the time, but on Sundays we usually have to park on the rear pad.

    • But that’s the beauty of living in a city. Kids can get around on their own, especially middle school and on. It cuts all that taxiing in half. The city provides autonomy to those who aren’t old enough to have a car.

  • When I moved to DC, I owned a car and parked on the street. Because of active choices I made designing my life to be very metro accessible, I would go months without ever needing to drive. Ultimately I sold my car back to my parents who had more use for it.

    About a year or so later, I bought a bicycle. It quickly became my preferred mode of transportation and is one of the best purchases I’ve ever made.

  • My wife and I have 2 vehicles and 3 bikes between us in CoHi. (we had 4 bikes at two different times within the last two years, but I’ve had 2 bikes stolen from our condo…) Both of them are parked in an underground garage. I work in southern MD so I have no choice but to have a vehicle.

    Still, I think it’s kind of funny that I get looked down upon by city-dwellers for owning a car. Cars and Jeeps have been my #1 hobby since I could drive and I will never not own at least one vehicle. Before I moved into the city, I’ve owned as many as 3 at a time, but obviously can’t afford the parking for that now. I actually enjoy driving my vehicles (not in the city of course) so for me, it’s not just an appliance to get me to work. Plus, how the hell can I enjoy things outside the city without a vehicle? Pay an insane amount of money to use a crappy, inconvenient smart car? No thanks.

    • Every time I used zip car I felt stressed out and ripped off.

      • I feel unsafe driving a ZipCar. Those cars have the worst transmissions ever, it’s impossible to know what speed the car will go when you put your foot on the pedal.

        • I assume you’re talking about Car2Go – they have the worst transmissions in recent memory. Zipcar has a fleet of all sorts of different cars; there’s no such thing as a “special” Zipcar transmission.

          • Oops, I did mean Car2Go. Car2Go is the worst possible advertising for SmartCars, I was very interested in one until I drove a Car2Go. But now I’d buy a lawnmower before I bought a SmartCar, no question.
            I’ve only been in a ZipCar a couple of times but they seemed fine!

          • It’s kind of funny actually: Car2Go was created as a vehicle to sell Smart/Mercedes’ huge overstock of Smart cars. Once folks caught on to how horrible their transmissions are, people stopped buying them all-together. So rather than sit on a rapidly depreciating asset that Smart/Mercedes couldn’t sell, they created Car2Go as a way of “selling” off their unused fleet (effectively to themselves).

  • I own a car and a bike. I park in my driveway. I live in Bloomingdale and mostly walk everwhere, including to work. I use my car maybe twice a week, but often not for weeks at a time. I use Capitol Bikeshare all of the time and often use car2go. I also use the bus and metro. love it all!

Comments are closed.