Christchurch in the market for new electric scooter providers Leave a comment


Lime, pictured, and Flamingo are licensed to operate in Christchurch, but that may change.

Christel Yardley/Stuff

Lime, pictured, and Flamingo are licensed to operate in Christchurch, but that may change.

Christchurch is in the market for new electric scooter service providers.

Lime and Flamingo are licensed to operate in the city, but with service permits expiring in August the city council is seeking expressions of interest from companies eager to enter the market.

E-scooters were first brought to Christchurch in 2018 and immediately proved popular.

Lime, Flamingo and Beam were trialled, with Beam later being withdrawn when the council capped the numbers at 1600 to balance demand with the need to keep footpaths uncluttered.

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Lime and Flamingo have permits for 800 e-scooters each. Lime has a permit to operate up to 200 e-bikes, which is also due to expire in August.

Although e-scooter usage has dropped slightly since the international borders were closed, they are still a very popular means of transportation around the city.

ALDEN WILLIAMS/STUFF

Stuff reporters Lee Kenny and Michael Hayward take out the two e-scooters vying for domination of the streets in Christchurch. (Video first published in June 2019)

E-bikes have also been popular, offering an option for people wanting to travel further.

The new permits will be granted will be for 12 months, with the opportunity to extend for further two years. The companies that obtain permits will also be able to operate up to 200 e-bikes each.

Council transport operations manager Steffan Thomas said safety was a strong focus of the assessment process.

“It is very important to us that providers of e-bikes and e-scooters act responsibly and do all they can to encourage users to travel and park safely,’’ he said.

E-scooters in Christchurch can be ridden on footpaths and shared paths, as well as roads. E-bike users need to comply with the usual road rules for biking and users need to park off the main thoroughfares and on footpaths, as with e-scooters.

Companies have until July 16 to register their interest in obtaining a permit.



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