electrical bike Bike Infrastructure Key to E-scooter Utilization in Portland – Streetsblog USA
Editor’s Word: This text initially appeared on Bike Portland and is republished with permission. We suspect that the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s findings can be relevant to communities throughout the nation, and encourage metropolis leaders throughout America to discover comparable questions in their very own locations.
The winding highway of shared electrical scooters in Portland has taken one other flip. Right this moment the transportation bureau launched a report (PDF) on scooter utilization and outlined plans for a everlasting system. Among the many findings is that cycling-specific infrastructure is essential to boosting scooter ridership, particularly in locations with high-stress streets like east Portland.
Portland launched e-scooters in summer 2018 as a pilot program. The Portland Bureau of Transportation deemed them a hit and launched a second pilot in spring 2019 that’s set to finish on December thirty first.
With classes discovered in courtship and constructive indicators that the scooters are a wanted and beneficial a part of Portland’s transportation ecosystem, the Bureau desires to quiet down with fewer companions and a longer-term dedication. There are at present six completely different firms providing scooters in Portland. That is clunky for each customers and PBOT workers to handle. A key suggestion within the report launched right this moment says PBOT desires to work with 1-3 firms for the following 2-3 years.
Among the many takeaways within the report is the affect of motorbike infrastructure on scooter utilization. Not solely did PBOT discover that the presence of motorbike lanes led to a lot much less sidewalk-scootering, GPS knowledge reveals 32% of all scooter mileage came about on protected bike lanes, unprotected bike lanes, bridge bikeways, paths, and/or neighborhood greenways. “E-scooter riders really feel extra comfy when there’s secure infrastructure to journey separate from automobiles,” states the report.
PBOT was additionally in a position to examine how ridership knowledge modified with the development of motorbike infrastructure that was constructed between the primary and second pilots. In Waterfront Park as an example, the construction of Better Naito in 2019 led to a 55% improve in driving on Naito and a subsequent 45% lower on the park path (this additionally needed to do with signage warning folks to remain out of the park and a few “geofencing” from scooter distributors).
The new protected bike lanes on the Halsey-Weidler couplet in Gateway additionally seem to have impacted scooter utilization. PBOT evaluation reveals a 125% improve in journeys between 2019 and 2018. And on 102nd the place new bike lanes were installed, there was a 22% enhance in ridership. These will increase come at the same time as general e-scooter ridership was decrease in 2019 than 2018.
These findings present that biking advocates could be sensible to embrace scooter riders to be able to strengthen and diversify their push for extra devoted infrastructure. “Bicycling is commonly related to white-dominant tradition,” PBOT writes within the report, “and e-scooters could or could not share that affiliation.”
The advice of a everlasting program makes it clear the Metropolis of Portland sees scooters as an integral a part of the modal combine.
Whereas some scooter journeys change bike journeys, knowledge reveals that scooters fill a distinct want: The common journey size for e-scooter riders is simply over one mile and fewer than 14 minutes; the typical (non-electric) bike share journey is over two miles and 25 minutes.
With the local weather change disaster staring us instantly within the face nowadays, PBOT additionally sees scooters as a key method to scale back automotive abuse. Town’s Transportation System Plan requires 475,000 fewer each day automotive and truck journeys by 2035. Nonetheless even when we succeed with adopted plans, we’ll nonetheless provide you with a “journey hole” of 63,000 each day journeys (see graph at proper). “If new mobility companies like e-scooters can present a gorgeous possibility that reduces automotive use and automotive possession, they might assist shut this ‘journey hole’ and meet metropolis congestion and local weather objectives,” states the report.
And naturally e-scooter journeys are far more earth-friendly than automotive and truck journeys. PBOT estimates scooter riders have helped Portland decrease carbon emissions by 167 metric tons and have eliminated the equal of 27 passenger automobiles and vehicles from the streets over the 2019 pilot interval.
Together with the report, PBOT launched a scooter knowledge dashboard and survey. Get all the data and hyperlinks here.