Lime to exit Charlottesville electric scooter program in 2020
Lime has been running internet and application-driven electric scooters in Charlottesville for a year, and it will quote the costs of recent regulations on electric scooters and electric bikes, suspend operations in 2020 and The convoy evacuated from the city.
The city council recently approved regulations regarding equipment that limit the number of scooters a company can deploy in the area and limit where scooters can be operated and parked.
The company says the rules prove that the free-rider bridge is too far.
"We love Charlottesville and we love serving Charlottesville," said Robert Gardner of Lime. "It worked well for us, but the reason we are leaving in 2020 is because of changes in regulations."
New regulations include limits and requirements on the number of vehicles a supplier can operate, set by city servicer Tarron Richardson.
City spokesman Brian Wheeler said Richardson had 350 scooters in the city and that there was no limit to the number of electric bikes. Providers will be required to equip 100 electric scooters and 50 electric bicycles.
Charlottesville established a pilot program in November 2018 to determine if the city allows ride-hailing services.
According to these initial regulations, the city does not require bicycle use in all cases. The company has a cap of 100 scooters, but it can also be increased by providing up to 50 bikes.
However, Charlottesville and Albemarle County passed a law requiring the jurisdiction to quickly develop regulations on equipment after a decree or loss of regulatory authority is passed by January 1.
The city's pilot program ends in December, and the company will have to reapply to continue operations.
In last year's pilot program, Lime operated 150 electric scooters, but new regulations approved by the council require the company to deploy at least 100 electric scooters and 50 electric bikes. If Lime wants to increase the number of scooters from this number, he will need to add additional bikes.
Lime started in the city with 100 scooters and 40 bicycles. Around the summer, when Bird in California withdrew its 100 scooters, the bicycles were removed.
However, for Lime, it is not cost-effective to operate bicycles because, according to the company, they are often the targets of vandalism and frequent mechanical failures.
"This will reduce the number of [Lime] electric scooters from 150 to 100 unless you add another 50 electric bicycles, which are not cost-effective due to malicious damage and other maintenance issues," Gardner said. "We It's been discovered that bicycles are often damaged. People can disassemble and remove bicycle seats, wheels and other parts, and adding them to the fleet really doesn't make sense. "
Wheeler said the city is driving bicycle demand as the University of Virginia will end its UBike rental program in May.
"One of the goals is to ensure that bicycles are still available for hire," he said.
Geofence requirements will limit speed and speed into certain areas (for example, downtown shopping malls and UVa), and require riders to park scooters at designated places (possibly not far from the destination), which was also a decision on Lime Had an impact.
Lime officials point out that driver loss is a problem when it comes to limiting software implementation costs in areas and geofencing.
"When we have a reasonable focus on our products, Lime is absolutely happy to work with our government partners in geo-fenced areas, and often we find that other alternative solutions, such as signage, can be more than" solutions " Good or better. "Technology" option, "Gardner said.
Electric scooters and bicycles, also known as "chassis-less micromobiles" by people who operate and supervise, allow cyclists to pay to check scooters and bicycles through an app on their phone and then leave them for the next user To pick.
According to city data, in Charlottesville, 30,000 users made more than 200,000 trips last year, for a total of 200,000 miles.
Lime and competitor Bird brought 100 scooters to the city, plus 40 electric Lime bikes, respectively for the pilot project in early 2019.
Byrd exited the area in June, while the council voted to extend the pilot program to the end of the year. Lime removed the bike for maintenance reasons but kept the scooter.
Rival VeoRide joined 150 scooters and 50 bikes in November. Wheeler said the company would stay in the city under the pilot program rules.
According to the city's data, from November 2018 to October 2019, 30,000 users made more than 200,000 trips, for a total of 200,000 miles.
New York City plans to use the funds in the licensing program, which is expected to total $ 72,000 in 2019, to hire an employee to monitor compliance.