The pilot phase of Seattle’s shared scooter program has reached the end of the road and three companies have been selected to continue putting their micromobility devices on city streets, Seattle Department of Transportation announced Thursday.
Following a review process, operating permits for 2022-23 have been issued to Link (by Superpedestrian), Lime and Bird. Companies will be able to deploy up to 2,000 electric scooters each.
Bird is a new entry in the mix. The company operates in more than 400 cities and in accordance with SDOT, you will bring your most recent third generation scooter to Seattle, which “offer a safer ride and longer battery life than previous models.
Bird also said he plans to bring his newly introduced Visual bird parking system (VPS) technology to Seattle. Previously tested in a handful of cities, including New York, San Diego, and San Francisco, VPS aims to help with more organized scooter parking and keep sidewalks clear.
Link and Lime have already operated during the pilot phase, which saw increased adoption of the carry option. According to a recent report260,000 passengers made more than 1.4 million scooter trips from October 2020 to September 2021.
Wheels and Spin also operated during the pilot, but missed the cutoff for new permits. SDOT said the two companies will have a few weeks to wind down their operations and transfer their fleets to other cities.
SDOT said the permit review process produced “strong proposals” and considered a commitment to safety, community involvement and continuous improvement, as well as considering the needs of others traveling on streets, sidewalks, bike lanes and trails. .
Lime, which has been renewing its fleet, will continue to offer pedal-assist electric bikes in addition to scooters. Veo will also continue to offer its Cosmo electric bikes, and later this year Link will begin offering sit-style scooters in addition to stand-up scooters.