On Friday 30th October the New York City invited companies to apply for an e-scooter pilot program, expected to launch in March 2021.
Companies of all sizes, some from overseas, said they intend to apply. They included established U.S. firms Bird and Lime and two leading European companies, Voi and TIER.
New York City is seen as a prize because it has such a high concentration of short-distance trips that might be considered too far too walk but too short for mass transit, said Alex Engel, a spokesman for the National Association of City Transportation Officials (Nacto), a coalition of North American transportation departments.
Last year, e-scooters leapfrogged above bike share to become the most popular form of micro-mobility shared rides nationwide, with 86 million of the country’s 136 million trips, according to Nacto data.
New York City, in its solicitation to companies, asked for details regarding technologies the firms offer for parking and safety. The city also solicited applications from firms that provide services to monitor e-scooter companies, including trip-data aggregation and analysis, scooter collection, and impound services.
A longer version of this article was first published in the Wall Street Journal.