The Voi is set to launch a fleet of electric scooters in Cambridge in its first UK trial
Yonkers, N.Y., chose Bird to run the state's first shared electric scooter program.Less than two months after the New York City Council approved the introduction of electric micro-motor vehicles, a fleet of Bird scooters will be launched in August.
"Yonkers' commitment to micro-mobility is unmatched, and Bird is honored to serve here and in New York State in the first electric scooter pilot program," said Rebecca Hahn, Bird's Chief corporate social Responsibility Officer."Like many New Yorkers, Yonkers residents are adopting socially detached transportation habits in the wake of COVID-19.As cities continue to recover and rebuild, we look forward to providing them with a safe, sustainable way to remain mobile and support local businesses."
Yonkers City, one of the first New York cities to adopt scooter-sharing, will now be the first in New York state to do so.
Mayor Mike Spano said, "Yonkers is pleased to once again lead the city in providing smart, emission-free transportation solutions to our communities.""The partnership with Bird will provide residents and visitors with the opportunity to see our city in an easy and convenient way, yet at the same time affordable, reliable and fun."
Chicago also recently selected Bird to participate in the city's 2020 microtransit program.
Voi, the Swedish scooter-sharing company, is to launch a trial in Cambridge to launch its UK business.
The company won a competitive tender process from the Joint Cambridgeshire and Peterborough councils this year to run the region's only trial of electric scooters.
This is an opportunity for Voi after it missed a license for electric scooters in Paris last month, forcing the company to pull out of the French capital.
The UK only recently approved electric scooters on a temporary basis next year, providing the next major market for electric scooters.
Sharing companies such as Voi will be able to carry out trials of electric scooters across the country with the approval of local authorities, which will eventually provide information on long-term regulation of the use of electric scooters on UK streets.
The Joint Cambridgeshire and Peterborough authority has issued only one approval in its competitive bidding process, which will allow Voi, which recently raised $30m, to deploy e-bikes in its rental fleet.
The UK government quickly tracked the launch of the electric scooter trial as part of a series of measures to address transport issues during and after locking.
More recently, alternatives to cars and public transport, such as bicycles and scooters, have received more attention as the UK government works to improve infrastructure.
According to many electric scooter operators, their vehicles will help divert traffic during travel and continue to address emissions and congestion in cities.
Voi's operations in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough will be supported by 50 engineering, mechanical and fleet management positions.
This includes disinfecting scooters every 24 hours to prevent any possible spread of COVID-19.
Cyclists will have to pay £1 to unlock the scooter, which costs 20 cents a minute, or they can sign up for a monthly subscription.
The fleet will be deployed in September and will be integrated with train and bus services across the city, according to the company.
Voi CHIEF Executive Fredrik Hjelm said: "People are eager to get out of their cars and choose greener vehicles."
"Cities that are serious about reducing pollution and congestion see a huge opportunity to introduce modes of transport that can fundamentally improve the way we move in urban areas."
Cambridgeshire's mayor and Peterborough's mayor, James Palmer, said carbon emissions in the area had fallen by 27 per cent this year as the closure left many streets empty and cycling increased by 200 per cent.
Richard Corbett, Voi's UK manager, said scooters could replace one-fifth of the rides in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.
In the UK, official use of scooters is still in its infancy, while other cities that have launched schemes have so far encountered problems with abuse and anti-social behaviour.
The trial version of Voi will evolve and adapt over the course of 12 months.
In three months, Voi will provide the authorities with data on journeys and user feedback, as well as recommendations for improving the city's infrastructure to accommodate the new modes of transport.
Organisations that provide such feedback include the Royal Institute of The Movement of the Blind and disabled.
Voi has also launched an "online traffic school" to raise awareness about the safe use of electric scooters.