HOOD RIVER — Forth is hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the launch of The CRuSE Project, a program for community carsharing in Hood River, at 11 a.m. on June 24 at the Hood River Fire Department, 1785 Meyer Parkway.

In-person remarks will be provided by program partners including Kate McBride (mayor, City of Hood River), Maddy Reznick (Columbia Willamette Clean Cities Coalition), Etta Lockey (vice president, Pacific Power), Patty Fink (executive director, Columbia Area Transit), and Kelly Yearick (senior program manager, Forth).

The Clean Rural Shared Electric Mobility (CRuSE) Project is a three-year program to demonstrate a financially sustainable model for plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) carsharing in rural communities. It is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office.

The CRuSE Project launched on June 8, providing residents and visitors access to five Honda Clarity Electric vehicles throughout Hood River at affordable housing sites, the city center, and tourist areas.

Two cars are placed on City of Hood River property and one can be utilized by city employees for business-related travel. A third car is placed near the waterfront area of Hood River to provide easy access for tourists visiting the Columbia Gorge. The public is invited to begin reserving these vehicles at the following locations: Columbia Parking Lot, Hood River Fire Station, and along the waterfront near the Gorge Paddling Center.

Two additional cars are placed at affordable housing sites in Hood River owned by Columbia Cascade Housing Corporation, which includes low-income and non-English speaking residents. These vehicles will be available to reserve later this summer.

This project is made possible with contributions, collaboration and input of many local organizations including Columbia Area Transit, Columbia Cascade Housing Corporation, Pacific Power, the Hood River County Energy Council, local governments, and Mid-Columbia Economic Development District staff.