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Zipcar UK plants life-sized 'living car' installation to urge Brits to travel more sustainably



The UK’s leading car-sharing club Zipcar UK has partnered with London floral artist Alice McCabe of Metafleur studio to create a life-size Living Car made entirely from plants, herbs and flowers  

The installation comes as 9 in 10 drivers want to see more green spaces in their cities and towns, and 92% are concerned about pollution levels caused by traffic 

Zipcar UK is urging Brits to maintain the improved air quality in cities as we emerge from lockdown by making greener choices



Wednesday 19th May 2021, London - With more Brits on the move as lockdown restrictions lift, Zipcar UK has planted a striking Living Car installation in central London to inspire drivers to make greener travel choices and cut carbon emissions post-lockdown. 

Blooming with over 500 plants, flowers and herbs, including Cupressus conifer, which is a natural air purifier, the Living Car installation symbolises a greener future for cities. 

Through the build, Zipcar UK aims to show Brits that by reducing car ownership and embracing car sharing with Zipcar, we can achieve sustainable urban living and make room for green spaces to thrive in our cities.

The installation has been created by Zipcar UK, the UK’s leading car sharing club, after research revealed that 9 in 10 drivers are concerned about how pollution levels will rise in their local area while 93% call for a growth in green spaces across towns and cities. 


According to the research, two thirds (63%) of drivers have become more aware of the impact their travel choices have on the environment since the pandemic. Over the past year, the car sharing club witnessed its highest ever surge in member sign-ups when lockdown lifted last summer as Brits turned to greener transport.

As scientists have revealed that nitrogen dioxide levels dropped by 52% on average in the first lockdown and 28% during this year’s lockdown, Zipcar UK is urging more Brits to make the move to car sharing in a bid to save our cities from pollution post-lockdown.* For every one Zipcar vehicle, 13 privately owned cars are removed from UK roads as the need for private car ownership is reduced. 


James Taylor, General Manager at Zipcar UK says: 
“It took a pandemic for our streets to become noticeably cleaner and greener, and we now have the opportunity to make urban travel more sustainable and not revert back to the old ways of the past. 

Over the last 18 months, we’ve seen the highest ever surge in sign-ups to join Zipcar with over 116 thousand new members since the first lockdown. 77% of members have told us they’re adopting Zipcar to reduce their carbon footprint, showcasing the trend away from car ownership and towards car sharing. This is one of many simple changes that help make our cities more sustainable, and the ambition behind our Living Car is to inspire people to consider what change they can make to contribute to this greener future.”


The Living Car will be parked in Spitalfields Market, Brushfield Street from 19th-21st May 2021 for people to visit.

Zipcar UK chose to partner with Tower Hamlets as one of the first councils in the country to declare a climate emergency. Its outstanding green initiatives include the Liveable Streets Programme which aims to improve the look and feel of public spaces across the borough to make it easier and safer to travel by sustainable means. The car’s carbon neutral flowers will be donated to the local community after use. 


John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, said:   
“Tower Hamlets became the first council in London to declare a climate emergency in March 2019 and we remain committed in reaching our target at becoming a net zero carbon council by 2025 and a net zero carbon borough by 2050 or sooner.  

“This installation shows the importance of nature returning to the streets and demonstrates the positive impact less cars have on our environment. This is something we will continue to make a priority as part of our Transport Strategy which sets out our vision and priorities from 2020 – 2041 on travel through sustainable means.”


Head down to Spitalfields Market, Brushfield Street between 18th-21st May 2021 to visit the Living Car installation, and you could win £250-worth of Zipcar credits by sharing an image of it on social media with the hashtag #greenstreets.


Notes to Editors 
*University of York, 13th April 2021



About Zipcar
Zipcar is the world’s leading car-sharing network, driven by a mission to enable simple and responsible urban living. With its wide variety of self-service vehicles available by the minute, hour or day, Zipcar operates in urban areas and university campuses in cities and towns across Canada, Costa Rica, Iceland, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. Zipcar offers the most comprehensive, most convenient and most flexible car-sharing options available. Zipcar is a subsidiary of Avis Budget Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: CAR), a leading global provider of mobility solutions. More information is available at
About the Zipcar UK data
The customer data is based on a survey conducted with 979 Zipcar UK members. 
The Zipcar UK internal data was extracted from March 1st 2020- March 1st 2021. 



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