Tuesday, October 19, 2021

New e-scooter operator hits Christchurch streets

A new e-scooter operator is about to hit the streets of Christchurch, as Neuron Mobility joins Lime in providing e-scooters and e-bikes for public hire.

Christchurch City Council has approved a 12-month permit – an option for it to be extended for a further two years – for Neuron Mobility to operate up to 800 electric scooters and up to 200 electric bikes in the city.

Council says that over the past year, local residents used rental e-scooters and e-bikes on more than 71,000 trips a month.

Shorter trips of under two kilometres accounted for nearly 75% of e-scooter and 65% of e-bike trips.

Lime, which was the first e-scooter company to set up in Christchurch, has also been given a permit to offer up to 800 e-scooters and up to 200 e-bikes for hire.

“The two existing permits are due to expire at the end of September so we went out to the market earlier this year seeking expressions of interest from companies keen to provide e-scooter and e-bike services in Christchurch,’’ says Council Transport Operations Manager, Steffan Thomas.

“We received five strong proposals. After thoroughly evaluating all of them, we have awarded the permits to Lime and Neuron Mobility, both of whom have demonstrated a strong focus on safety and sustainability.

“Their e-bikes and e-scooters will be a useful addition to our transport network because they will make it easy for people to take short trips around the city and to connect to other transport modes for longer trips,’’ Mr Thomas said.

Lime is a major international operator with a presence in more than 200 cities around the world. Neuron Mobility is a significant Asia-Pacific operator with an established presence in 22 cities, including Auckland, Hamilton and Dunedin.

Neuron Mobility Chief Executive, Zachary Wang says the company was thrilled to be launching in Christchurch and look forward to partnering with the Council to deliver a safe and efficient service.

“Riders will be able to take advantage of our e-scooters and e-bikes for a safe, convenient and fun way to travel around Christchurch Central and surrounding areas,” Mr Wang said.

The permits for Lime and Neuron Mobility will be effective from 1 October.

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