Newark launches dockless bike, e-scooter pilot program Leave a comment

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka announced on July 13 that NewarkGo, the city’s first-ever shared bike and e-scooter program, will launch a six-month pilot this month, providing up to 2,000 affordable electric scooters and bicycles.

The program aims to link residents to work, schools, housing, medical facilities, transportation networks and other important services in New Jersey’s largest city. Bird Rides and VeoRide will be awarded permits to operate the short-term shared service, which will be available to residents and visitors citywide.

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Audible Executive Chairman Don Katz sit together together a celebration of Audible's 30,000th Lunch out Wednesday at Fresh Coast on March 4, 2020.

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Audible Executive Chairman Don Katz, center, sit together together a celebration of Audible’s 30,000th Lunch out Wednesday at Fresh Coast on March 4, 2020. – GABRIELLE SAULSBERY

“Our schools, offices and businesses continue to reopen, but NewarkGo can help Newarkers access everything our city offers,” Baraka said. “This safe, fast and affordable service is the first new mode of transportation our city has seen in decades. We have partnered with Bird and Veo to build stronger connections between communities and we look forward to paving the way for new opportunities for people everywhere.”

Offering up to 1,000 electric scooters and bicycles, respectively, Bird and Veo currently operate in more than 250 and 40 cities, respectively. The operators submitted applications to Newark’s Department of Engineering and were evaluated in accordance with the permitting process adopted in April by the Newark Municipal Council on a first come first service basis.

The scooters and bikes will provide service to communities in every ward, including those with lower incomes and longer commutes, with discounted ride options for qualifying residents, alternative rental services for people without access to cellphones or credit cards, and adaptive bike designs to accommodate people of different ages and abilities.

Both companies will conduct outreach and educational programs to explain details of the program, including how to rent and return bikes and e-scooters, rider trainings and helmet giveaways.

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