Alameda, the island I live on, is cut off from easy access to the local rapid transit system. Residents need to cross one of three bridges or a tunnel to make it to a BART station. Some people (including yours truly) ride a bicycle to the train station where they have a place to park your bike for the day. For those that drive to the station, by the time they take the trouble to get into their car, they figure they might as well drive the whole way – clogging the roads and using up gasoline.

One idea being passed around is the ULTRA, a small, 4-person transporter that is something between a tram and a Zip Car. Grab one of these that run on fixed rails around town and are parked at stations along the track. Punch in your destination and you’re on your way. The idea is that a network of these ULTRAs could shuttle people to the nearest train station and cut down the need to wait for a bus or drive your car.