Plans to trial e-scooters in the region are moving forward as part of the West of England Combined Authority’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The West of England is one of only four Future Transport Zones in the country, set up to trial new transport technologies.
The trial of e-scooters is one of the first projects underway that has been fast tracked following the coronavirus outbreak.
West of England Mayor Tim Bowles said: “We will be one of the first places in the country to see how e-scooters can help get our region moving. I’ve tried one myself during a visit to one of our region’s e-scooter manufacturers and they’re incredibly easy to use, so there is a real opportunity for us to capture positive changes in how people are getting around.
“E-scooters are part of my wider plans to make it easier to get around the West of England by giving people real alternatives to using their car. By improving our buses and building the new MetroWest rail network, making it easier to walk and cycle around the region and using new technologies like this we can cut congestion, improve air quality and reduce carbon emissions.”
WECA is currently working on having e-scooter trials ready to begin to roll out towards the end of August, in line with the Department for Transport’s requirements. Subject to arrangements with operators, it is anticipated that e-scooters will be available in the region very soon after that.
It is anticipated that longer-term hire scooters would operate throughout Bristol and Bath and across the region, while some hop on, hop off scooters are more likely to be located in the city centre areas. WECA is working with its constituent councils to establish which areas this may cover.