The New York City DOT (NYCDOT) recently announced the geographic boundaries for the e-scooter pilot mandated by City Council legislation passed in 2020.
The pilot will offer a new shared mobility option in eastern Bronx neighborhoods from Eastchester and Co-op City to Throggs Neck and Soundview, an 18-sq-mile area home to 570,000 residents. The pilot will allow NYCDOT to see how e-scooter share works on city streets for the first time, and will require that companies operate in alignment with the city’s Vision Zero and equity goals. The pilot, expected to launch in the late spring, will run for a minimum of one year.
“Working closely with the Council, we are happy to deliver the city’s first e-scooter share pilot -- crafted to allow Bronx residents to try e-mobility to and from countless critical destinations, from Co-op City to the Soundview NYCFerry terminal,” NYCDOT Commissioner Hank Gutman said in a statement. “Safety is our foremost priority, so DOT will require that scooter companies keep sidewalks and pedestrian ramps clear as well as closely track all crashes.”
The pilot is a result of a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) issued by NYCDOT in October 2020. The pilot is estimated to bring as many as 2,000 to 3,000 scooters to the East Bronx during Phase 1 (2021) with an increase to as many as 4,000 to 6,000 in a potential second phase (2022). The zone is designed to not overlap with Bronx neighborhoods targeted by Citi Bike as part of the bike-share company’s current expansion plan. NYCDOT will evaluate the pilot on how well it provides equitable coverage across the entire pilot zone in neighborhoods which are together over 80% Black and Latino—as well as home to approximately 25,000 NYCHA residents.
Modeled on previous pilots, NYCDOT will establish the e-scooter program with demonstration agreements that require high standards and allow for strong enforcement mechanisms governing service provision and operator behavior. E-scooter operators will also be required to pay fees to fund third-party data management vendor for compliance oversight. The pilot’s phased roll-out is expected to allow NYCDOT to test a variety of strategies to manage sidewalk clutter, including dedicated parking corrals and software-based management of scooter parking. New York City is among the last American cities with an e-scooter share program and will benefit tremendously from the lessons learned across the country and the world.
SOURCE: New York City DOT