Electric scooters return to Richmond

Published: Jun. 6, 2019 at 2:32 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - E-scooters are making an official comeback to RVA.

Bolt Scooters is launching a fleet of 500 electric scooters around the city.

Of course, this technology is not new to Richmond, as "Bird” dropped off a batch of scooters last summer. Those scooters were later impounded, after the city said Bird didn’t go through the proper channels before deploying.

Will Nicholas, a representative for Bolt, says the company just received their license and permits on Monday, after three months of working preparations with the city.

The first batch of scooters launched Thursday from Monroe Park and other sections of Richmond.

Nicholas says where people ride, will dictate what other parts of the city till see them pop up.

“If we see that scooters are rented in 15 minutes after deployment at the University of Richmond or downtown, we’ll continue to proliferate those areas with scooters.”

He says a dozen Richmonders will be employed full-time by Bolt to maintain the upkeep of the scooters, which includes picking them up at the end of the night and recharging batteries.

Portland, Oregon, also launched a pilot program with e-scooters, and according to a study, more residents used the scooters over ride sharing companies like Lyft or Uber.

Nicholas says the scooters could even help businesses.

“A coffee shop, a bar, a gallery, whatever. If you can’t afford to be where all the foot traffic is - it makes it incredibly hard to be successful. But with these forms of transportation that allows people to travel further distances, could create a consistent flow of patrons that business wouldn’t otherwise receive.”

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