Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

By Samuel Alioto
Observer Staff Writer 

Angry Birds Selected by Santa Monica; Jump (Uber), Lime (Google) and Lyft also get the nod from City Hall

On the same day, City of San Francisco denies permits to all 4 scooter companies

 

August 29, 2018

2 girls on a scooter. No doubt this is too much fun to be legal

Despite Bird and Lime Scooter Company fears that they would be passed over in favor of Lyft and Uber, the City of Santa Monica announced the selection of Lime, Bird, Lyft and Jump as the four operators to participate in the City's Shared Mobility Pilot Program. There were supposed to be just 2 companies, but ultimately 4 were selected.

2 weeks ago, Bird called for its riders to flock to City hall, when it found out that it was now competing with Google backed Lime, with Uber backed Jump, and with ride share giant Lyft.

The City says its pilot program "builds upon the City's existing Breeze Bike Share system, and expands Santa Monica's commitment to be a truly multi-modal community that offers residents and visitors a variety of sustainable and convenient transportation options." Yawn.

Each of the four selected operators will begin the pilot with an initial allocation of 750 devices each, totaling 1,000 e-bikes and 2,000 e-scooters.

The operators will have to compete for future licenses to have more bikes.

The city and the four scooter companies compete it to issue a press releases with the words sustainability, community, diversity, in them. Meanwhile, on the very same day, "San Francisco dealt a blow to the largest shared-scooter companies on Thursday, awarding two smaller startups exclusive rights to rent the electric-powered vehicles for a year in a decision that could change the course of the nascent market.

A couple getting on bird scooters in Westwood Village check their Apps

The nation’s tech capital denied permits to 10 companies, including Bird Rides Inc. and Lime, which have raised nearly $1 billion in capital to quickly populate cities with scooters—often against the will of regulators. The ruling is a clear rebuke to their pugnacious strategy." Wall Street Journal. https://www.wsj.com/articles/san-francisco-denies-scooter-permits-for-bird-lime-uber-and-lyft-1535669924

"We are thrilled to have been awarded permits for both bikes and scooters by the City of Santa Monica," said Caroline Samponaro, Lyft's Bike & Scooter Policy lead. "The city's decision to collaborate with Lyft deepens a partnership that will reduce vehicle congestion, increase public transportation trips and provide equitable transportation solutions to all residents of Santa Monica."

Caroline Samponaro of Lyft.

"The pilot program has been designed to collaboratively and flexibly develop an effective model to regulate these new shared transportation options to ensure compliance with applicable laws while promoting health and safety."

 

 

 

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