Following the successful launch of the West of England Combined Authority’s e-scooter trial in October the operating area for e-scooters has been expanded in Bristol and Bath.
The expansion will allow people to reach new destinations by e-scooter including Bishopston, St Werburghs, Easton and Bedminster in Bristol and Oldfield Park and Bathwick in Bath.
It comes as e-scooter operator Voi announced that the Voi-4-Heroes programme is to be reintroduced during the new lockdown period. The scheme gives free rides to NHS workers, emergency service personnel and the armed forces offering an alternative way to access essential work.
The 12-month trial, operated by leading e-scooter operator Voi, introduced 100 rental e-scooters in central Bristol and 50 scooters in central Bath. Since launch there have been over 62,000 rides taken and over 158,000km travelled.
- In Bristol there have been over 50,000 rides taken by over 14,000 unique riders with over 127,000 km travelled.
- In Bath there have been over 12500 rides and 4800 unique riders with over 31,000 km travelled.
To service the new expanded areas the numbers of scooters will gradually increase to 450 in Bristol and 100 in Bath.
There are plans to further extend the operating area to South Gloucestershire and introduce a personal lease scheme to enable residents to hire a scooter for a longer period of time and keep it at their home or place of work.
E-scooters are available to unlock for £0.99 and cost 14p per minute. There are also a variety of subscriptions available, as well as discounted passes for students, key workers, and those on low-incomes.
To unlock an e-scooter, riders can download the Voi app, (available on iOS and Android) must be 18 years old or over and have a valid UK driving licence (full or provisional). Safety measures to protect riders against Covid-19 include equipping all handlebars with anti-bacterial copper tape and ensuring the vehicles are regularly disinfected.
The trial’s operator Voi will create more than 60 jobs in the region during the trial, which is being led by the Combined Authority in partnership with Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire councils. The trial does not include private owned e-scooters which remain illegal except on private land.
The trial forms part of the West of England’s £28m plans for a Future Transport Zone in the region that will improve access to public transport for local communities through trialling innovative new transport technologies.