Louisville locals might see many new e-scooters and bikes appear on their streets in the ensuing months. City officials recently announced they sent out probationary permits to the following micro-mobility companies: Spin, Lyft, Jump, Bolt & HOPR.
According to Louisville’s current policy, these licenses will expire six months after each company received them. Companies will initially be allowed to drop 150 e-bikes, e-scooters, and/or shareable bikes throughout the city.
How well these devices perform will determine when each company can increase its share of devices. For instance, if every vehicle in one company’s fleet has an average of four daily rides, then that company will be allowed to send in 100 additional devices per month. There will be a cap, however, at 650 devices.
News of this expansion came as a bit of a shock to locals because Louisville Public Works’ website says only four e-scooter companies can operate at one time. In interviews with the press, Public Works employees admit they have yet to update this webpage. Under current Louisville law, a maximum of eight dockless vehicle providers can legally operate with permits.
There’s no word yet when any of the five companies listed above will start sending vehicles into Derby City. Executives at these businesses also have yet to tell the press what devices they are planning on offering Louisville residents.
After the initial permit period is completed, Louisville officials will review the popularity and safety profile of each company’s devices. If lawmakers want to pursue a partnership, then they could hand out one-year non-probationary licenses.
Santa Monica-based Bird was the first company to (illegally) send rentable e-scooters into Louisville. City leaders have since allowed both Bird and the San Francisco-based Lime to send in dockless ridesharing vehicles as a part of a permit program. You should also know that Bird offers free helmets.
To learn more about the legality of e-scooters in Louisville, check out this website put together by Louisville Public Works. You could also read through this official document on Louisville’s dockless vehicle policies.