The ultimate solution for the last-mile problem
Our streetscapes are changing: advanced technology increasingly connects people to a variety of transportation options, and a shifting culture is increasingly interested in owning the experience of mobility rather than the vehicle itself. The result is an emergence of new, shared mobility services. Shared mobility services have extolled the potential environmental, social, and economic benefits of reduced traffic and parking congestion, household cost savings, increased public transit ridership and activity near transit hubs, reduced vehicle kilometers travelled (VKT) and corresponding greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions. Shared mobility could also support the first/last mile connection between outlying communities and public transit services.
So why all the frenzy? On paper, scooters look like the easiest of solutions for clean mobility. When they’re electric, they make it easier for everyone to choose a softer means of transportation: it is a breeze to go uphill and the e-scooter gets you anywhere, fast. “They’re a really great option if you are trying to flexibly and quickly get somewhere that’s five or six blocks away,” explains to Condé Nast Traveler Caen Contee, head of marketing at LimeBike. “We see ourselves taking on the last-mile problem.” For Travis Vander Zanden, former Uber and Lyft executive and founder of Bird, the goal is in fact not to replace bikes, but cars: “Our long-term goal is to get people out of cars, reduce traffic, and cut carbon emissions. We hope to replace as many as possible of the 40 percent of car trips in the U.S. that are less than two miles,” he says in the same article. On the other hand, manual scooters have the advantage of being allowed to ride on the sidewalk, as explains Knot co-founder Polina Mikhaylova to Business Insider France, which is a winning point for people who would be afraid to ride a bike or an electric scooter among traffic. Scooters are light and they don’t take much parking space (a problem residents are frequently complaining about with free-loading bikes) ; they don’t require specific infrastructures and are arguably easier to maintain than bikes.
As a matter of fact, scooters look like they could be a credible alternative to bike-sharing solutions, which are increasingly failing and have trouble reinventing themselves. A dozen years ago, the bike stations that flourished everywhere in Europe were a revolution that durably contributed to making bicycles part of urban mobility again. Today, the Vélib in Paris has proven to be a complete disaster, due mostly to vandalism and the impossible maintenance costs of keeping the float in shape. Free-floating bike solutions were no more successful: in early 2018, Hong-Kong based start-up Gobee Bike announced it was leaving the European market after only a few months of activity. At times, up to 90% of its float in Lille, France, needed repairing, and the company also had to face an unexpected number of thefts and unauthorised privatisations. Some, also highlighted the fact that no docks means it takes much more time to identify and retrieve the broken bikes. Scooter providers apparently believe they will not have these sorts of problems, or at least that they will be more manageable.
Transportation is rapidly changed by technology. The ability to conveniently request, track, and pay for trips via mobile devices is changing the way people get around and interact with cities. As shared-mobility is becoming popular among urban cities, e-scooter sharing is one of the frequently used mode. Highly efficient, flexible and cost-effective for users. A perfect choice for short urban journeys. Quick and easy charging. Environmental-friendly. No noise, no emissions and freedom of movement. Say goodbye to traffic congestion. Door to door now is available with e-scooters. Create independence for those who cannot afford to buy and maintain a vehicle.
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