Tuesday 23 June 2015

Electric scooter hire scheme could be coming to London

An electric scooter hire scheme that started in Paris this month will be in launched in London if it proves a success, its founders said today. The first batch of 70 Cityscoot vehicles have began operating in the French capital under a four month trial and cost Euro3 (£2.14) for each 15 minutes hired. Around 1000 of the 50cc equivalent scooters will be put in the streets of Paris next year.

Paris' Mayor Anne Hidalgo with a Cityscoot vehicle

Founder Bernard Edelist told The Times: ”London is definitely our top target after France. The British government wants to encourage two wheeled vehicles so the terrain seems favourable to us and the mentality is right.”
If it crosses the Channel it will be the third shared transport hire scheme pioneered in Paris and taken up by London. The Velib bike hire scheme started in Paris eight years ago and was adopted as Boris Bikes in London in 2010, while the Autolib electric car hire service launched in 2011 is due to transfer to London early next year.

The Cityscoot is a private initiative but has the backing the Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo who aims to leave cars with only a “residual place” within the city.
The German made scooters have a top speed of 28mph and a range of 65 miles before the battery runs flat. It takes up to five hours to recharge them.
The are no keys and helmets will be stored under the saddle. The hire period does not end until the helmet is replaced to its position.
Ms Hidalgo has banned coaches and lorries made before 2001 from the capital from this summer and next year it will be extended to cars made before 1997.
She has also pledged to create petrol and diesel-free districts where only electric vehicles will be authorised.