Electric scooters are coming to Fresno in November

Vanessa Vasconcelos Image
Friday, September 27, 2019
Electric scooters are coming to Fresno in November
FRESNO'S NEWEST RIDE: 500 Lime electric scooters will be deployed throughout the city of Fresno. All you have to do is download the app, scan it and zoom off.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Cars and bikes are no longer the only form of transportation on Fresno's roadways, thanks to the city's new shared mobility program.

As soon as November, electric scooters will be available at your fingertips.

An ordinance names Lime electric scooters as the company that will deploy about 500 scooters citywide.

Once it launches, you just download the app to find your ride. Scan it. And zoom off.

The scooters will be Fresno's newest mode of transportation - at least for a 6-month trial run.

In Thursday's City council meeting, members unanimously approved a 6-month shared mobility program, with Lime helping launch the pilot program.

"We've been engaged in many community meetings and heard back from the community as far as what they want," says Lime government relations senior director Katie Stevens.

The scooters are touted as easy to use and affordable.

Users download Lime's app, find their ride, scan and go.

Pricing is $1 to unlock and 29 cents per minute, with a low-income program of 50 cents to unlock and 7 cents per minute.

As for accountability, Lime is responsible for informing users of the rules of the road.

"We have education tutorials, we have incentive mechanisms to encourage people to park correctly. Then we have the ability to enforce," says Stevens.

500 scooters will be deployed throughout the city of Fresno, with more in high-volume places like the Tower and downtown. The scooters will not be allowed to operate on sidewalks and could be impounded if left in the middle of a sidewalk or parked in front of an entrance to a business.

Also, using GPS technology, Lime will be able to track the scooters, with the goal of controlling where they go.

Geo-fencing, to de-mobilize the scooters, will be placed in places like Fresno State's campus and Fashion Fair Mall.

Assistant city manager Jim Schaad says they've used examples from other communities to fine-tune the pilot program.

The program will cost the city $50,000 to $80,000, which they expect will be recovered with user fees.

If the 6-month pilot program is successful, the city could begin a competitive process for other franchises to participate.