Lime Launches 1,000 Shared Scooters in NYC with Focus on Safety, Equity, and Accessibility
Start spreading the news! Today, we launched 1,000 electric scooters in New York City, to kick off the Department of Transportation’s East Bronx scooter sharing pilot program. Our operations in New York City will focus on safety and providing an equitable, sustainable, affordable way to get around the city, seamlessly connecting residents to subway stations and bus stops.
"Lime is honored and grateful to once again serve New Yorkers and we’re excited to get rolling with shared electric scooters in the East Bronx,” said Lime CEO Wayne Ting. “Today is the culmination of years of community outreach, establishing trust and building meaningful relationships to finally bring a shared scooter program to New York City, and we look forward to continuing to earn the trust of all New Yorkers over the coming months and years. Our scooters will provide East Bronx residents and visitors safe, affordable, and accessible transportation to get around their neighborhoods, all while reducing congestion and connecting people to public transit. We’re laser-focused on operating a safe and equitable micromobility program in the greatest city in the world, as we hope to demonstrate to cities globally the tremendous benefits of shared electric vehicles in revolutionizing transportation."
The electric scooters add to Lime’s fleet of shared electric mopeds which launched April of this year and operate in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. The launch of electric scooters today makes us the only multi-modal micromobility operator in New York City. This is not Lime’s first time operating micromobility in New York - we previously provided shared electric bicycles as part of NYC DOT’s dockless bike share pilot program in the Rockaways and Staten Island, serving more than 300,000 trips.
To get riders comfortable with riding and handling the scooters, we hosted a series of six safety training sessions this summer, part of an extensive community outreach program in the East Bronx focused on safety and equity. Our demos at the Pelham Houses, Eastchester Gardens, and West Farms provided tips on safe, responsible riding and proper parking techniques to more than 100 Bronx residents. We also encouraged eligible residents to sign up for our equity pricing initiatives, Lime Aid and Lime Access, which provide discounts to frontline workers and all residents receiving state, local, and/or federal assistance, respectively.
New York will become just the second city in the United States to launch our latest generation scooter, the Gen4, one of the few shared e-scooters designed in-house by a micromobility operator. The Gen4 sets a new standard for the industry, with safety and durability as its hallmarks. Our unique experience operating in cities with a broad range of topographies, road conditions, climates, usage rates and user feedback, informed the design of the Gen4. It results in a scooter that is built to last more than five years, and that provides the smoothest ride experience of any shared scooter on the market.
Over the past three years, we have worked with advocates, legislators, delivery workers, and community partners to legalize electric scooters on New York streets, both at the state and local levels, leading to state legislation in 2020, followed by the introduction of a pilot program at the NYC Council. In applying to take part in the pilot program, we put forward a comprehensive vision for what a world-class scooter program could look like in New York--one of the few remaining global cities without shared scooters--prioritizing safety above all else.
New York’s decision to award Lime a permit for its e-scooter pilot program is the latest in a series of permit awards for the company from major cities around the world over the past year. Our differentiated approach, operational excellence and its extensive track record of being a reliable partner to cities has earned the leading micromobility operator permits in Paris, Chicago, Seattle and Denver--the biggest cities to run competitive permit processes, often with more than a dozen applicants. Lime is now the only micromobility company to operate in all of the world’s biggest cities with e-scooter or e-bike programs, also including London, Berlin, Rome, Seoul, Sydney, Los Angeles, Madrid and San Francisco.
Safety is Lime’s top priority, which is why riders’ first three scooter rides will begin in training mode, capping their speed at 10mph as they acclimate to riding scooters. Lime encourages riders to wear helmets and ride either in bike lanes or to the right of car traffic. Riding on sidewalks is prohibited and Lime will use its geofence technology to prevent scooters from being ridden in restricted areas, as well as outside of the pilot zone.
Lime partnered with the League of American Bicyclists to develop a safety quiz that riders will be required to complete before their first ride. Lime will be constantly evaluating its program in order to improve safety initiatives in real time and will continue to hold its signature First Ride Academy safe riding lessons as well as educate its riders via email, in-app messages, and more.
Equity was at the heart of Lime’s plans for New York City from the beginning. Through our Lime Access program, we will provide free 30-minute rides and $.04/minute thereafter to New Yorkers receiving public assistance, Pell Grants or unemployment, Fair Fare participants, SSDI recipients, and all NYCHA residents. In addition, we offer text-to-unlock options for those without smartphones and cash and alternative payment methods for the unbanked. To support the New Yorkers who got the city through the pandemic, Lime also instituted its Lime Aid program to provide significant discounts to frontline workers, teachers, people in the performing arts, non-profit, and hospitality sectors as well.
Lime will help the City achieve its OneNYC2050 goal of achieving carbon neutrality. We'll provide New York City with a certified 100% CarbonNeutral fleet, certified through the globally respected Carbon Neutral Protocol. Our Gen4 E-Scooters are anticipated to last at least five years, and our Gen 3 have lasted two years in the field and are still in use. Our service is powered by 100% renewable energy, zero emissions operations, extensive repair and reuse of scooter parts, and the systematic reuse and then recycling of materials and batteries. Lime is also working with Uber on a global sustainability initiative to encourage everyone to ride green as often as possible.
Lime will offer a library of accessible vehicles, available on-demand, and use our technology and operational excellence to prevent interference with public rights-of-way. We worked with disability advocates and community leaders to develop its New York City E-Scooter program as well as the development of our accessible vehicle library, and they will continue to advise us throughout the duration of the Pilot. Through its one-of-a-kind Lime Able program it will offer an on-demand suite of adaptive vehicles. The vehicles will be available for free daily rental in-app, by phone, or at community organization.
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