Micro mobility companies Dott, Lime, and Tier have to pull off their fleet of 15K e-scooters from the streets of Paris after the residents of Paris votes in favor to ban shared e-scooters during a referendum held on Sunday by Mayor Hidalgo.
With the decision to ban e-scooters from the street, many micromobility industries like Dott and Tier along with Lime will suffer a major blow. This is because pedestrians feel unsafe walking the streets. After numerous complaints about reckless driving and cluttered sidewalks,
Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris, organized a referendum on Sunday. Around 89% of residents voted against keeping shared e-scooters in the city. The three companies operating in the city will have to pull their fleet of 15,000 e-scooters out of the city streets by 1-September-2023.
Mayor Hidalgo said, â€œScooters are the cause of a lot of accidents and that the business model was too expensive to be sustainable, with a 10-minute ride costing about â‚¬5. She also said free-floating scooters aren’t as climate friendly as she’d want.â€ According to transport ministry figures, the ban is not applicable to shared micromobility companies and privately owned scooters.
Free floating scooters hit the streets of Paris in 2018 and soon became very popular among the residents. With a top speed as slow as 6 miles per hour (10 kilometers per hour) riders were allotted dedicated parking areas to use. Also, they were to pay a fine if rules are broken but lately e-scooters received a lot of pushbacks from residents.
H×©l×¨ne Chartier is the director of urban planning at a global network of mayors taking urgent actions towards climate change, C40. She has also served as an advisor to Mayor Hidalgo and in this context, Chartier said, â€œAs part of a mobility package that Paris would offer as an alternative to cars, [shared e-scooters] could have been an option.â€
Chartier further added, â€œWithout all the other problems, they could have said, okay why not? But if you add accidents, if you add difficulty on the public space, at some point you need to say this is not the main solution. We should invest more in bikes, e-bikes, walking.â€
The 3 companies Dott, Tier, and Lime said in a joint statement, â€œThe low voter turnout affected the results of the referendum. Only 103,084 people turned out to vote, which is about 7.5% of registered Paris voters.â€ They also blamed other things like the limited number of polling stations with long queues of voters dissuading young voters from voting.
According to them, no electric voting and restrictive rules are also a reason for such voting results. Dott, Tier, and Lime further added, â€œThe combination heavily skewed toward older age groups, which has widened the gap between pros and cons. The referendum was held the same day of the Paris marathon, and only Parisians were allowed to vote, leaving out those who live just outside the city but commute in.â€
As per the reports of Parisians, during the referendum, a high proportion of older voters were witnessed in the queues because all efforts to attract young voters went in vain.
Even though the residents of Paris votes in favor to ban shared e-scooters, since the referendum is not binding, and on the basis of low voter turnout, Mayor Hidalgo can still take the decision to keep e-scooters in the city.
Source: Anne Hidalgo Tweet