Paris: What will become of electric scooters?, Electric scooters in Paris: Autopsy of a fiasco | The echoes

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Hearing report – WYSSEM M. and Maxime G. faced the perpetuity for “voluntary violence which led to death without intention to give it” against Philippe Mongillot.

Paris: What will become of electric scooters ?

bye After the prohibition of the rental of electric scooters in Paris, 15.000 machines are found in technical unemployment. Lime, Dott and Tier, the three operators present in the capital, however assured that no two-wheelers will be thrown

Posted on 03/09/23 at 3:02 p.m

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Electric scooters in Paris: Autopsy of a fiasco

Self-service scooters derive their reverence on September 1 after five years marked by controversies and a referendum lost in the spring. Micromomability start-ups are now betting on the bike to bounce back.

The self-service scooters will disappear from the streets of Paris on September 1

Posted on August 31, 2023 at 7:20 updated on Sep 1. 2023 at 13:20

“Wow, it’s fast ! »Jumped on a Lime electric scooter, Cristina Gongora tamed her machine on the bicycle track on boulevard Voltaire in Paris, under the amused gaze of her husband. This summer, this couple of thirty -something from Houston (Texas) offered a week of relaxation in the tricolor capital.

On the program: visits to the great museums, picnic with hounds Chaumont, Lèche-Vitrine à la Samaritaine and scooter trips to admire the Haussmann style facades. This last experience will not happen soon. From September 1, on the 15th.000 self-service scooters of start-ups Lime, Dott and Tier must have left the pavement.

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End of self-service scooters in Paris: the story of a fiasco

Despite the limitation in 2020 to three operators for 5000 scooters each, Parisians always deplored the nuisances brought by these devices

NARRATIVE – In Paris, these self-service electric vehicles are now banished. Anne Hidalgo and the Greens no longer wanted.

A few years and then go away. Since Friday, September 1st, self-service scooters have been banned in Paris. The 15.000 vehicles in circulation must disappear. To the delight of the inhabitants of the capital ? In any case, consulted on this subject during a vote organized by the town hall in early April, the tiny minority which had participated in the vote (7 %) had not hesitated: in an overwhelming majority (89 %), Parisians had asked for the ban on this means of transport in ” Free Floating »».

Bread blessed for the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, who had therefore announced the end of these scooters for the end of August. An opportunity to please its environmental allies who today have a holy horror of this mode of travel exploited by private start-ups. He needed to strengthen his municipal majority after his cataclysmic presidential campaign (1.75 % of the vote).

Dazzling breakthrough

But these devices have not always experienced such a rejection, quite the contrary. When Lime made available, at the end of spring 2018, the first self-service scooters in Paris, this new concept aroused a craze among the 18-34 year olds. Remember: it was enough to scan the QR Code of the Patinte to unlock it. And you left to travel at high speed the streets of straight Paris as a ” I And hair in the wind. All this by ignoring traffic jams and without the slightest effort thanks to the electric motor of the machine. So much more hype, for young people, than the good old bike. “It’s fun, practical and fast”, summarizes Édouard, a follower of the first hour.

The scooter also benefited from a favorable context for its launch: following a change of service provider, Vélib ‘turned in slow motion. And, at the time, Anne Hidalgo and her ecological allies saw a good eye the hatching of this new service classified among the soft mobility. Had they not promised to decarbonize transport in the capital ? In early 2019, his transport assistant, Christophe Najdovski (EELV) said: “We are in favor of a modal postponement of the car to the other modes of transport such as the scooter and the bicycle. »»

With these boosts, the ” Free Floating Quickly made a dazzling breakthrough in the capital: millions of trips in a few months and 10 % of Parisians who, in April 2019, said customers of this service, according to an Odoxa survey. Suddenly, twelve operators (Lime, Bird, Hive, Tier …) offered their devices. Even Usain Bolt had deployed scooters to his brand. We then counted 30 .00 and we expected to count 40.000 end of 2019. In short, this market had the air of a far-West where everything seemed allowed.

But, with the anarchic invasion of these devices, the Parisians quickly discovered the nuisances that go with it: sidewalks invaded by scooters which rush in defiance of the safety of pedestrians, users who drive at full speed without helmet and provoke or undergo serious accidents, machines with a lifespan of a few weeks which constitute an ecological aberration, deplorable social practices where self -employed people called ” juicers »Recharge scooters on multipleisms in defiance of safety rules ..

According to road safety, there were 35 deaths in France in France in France against 10 in 2019 among EDP users (personal travel equipment), essentially scratches

The town hall of Paris could not ignore these drifts because the citizens were constantly complained about it. But, the highway code not speaking of scooters, difficult to supervise their practice. “We cannot prohibit or regulate their activity”, recognized Jean-Louis Missika, then assistant to the mayor of Paris, in charge of town planning. Perhaps, but the capital has also paid its initial indulgence towards start-ups in the sector. In Toulouse or Bordeaux, where the town halls, from the start, gave them a colder welcome, their development was less dazzling.

To put a little order, the Marie of Paris has multiplied the initiatives (royalty of 45 euros minimum for each device at the expense of the operator, a fine of 135 euros when you drive on the sidewalks …). “The operators played the game, especially since the capital was their main market”, Esime Aymeric Weyland, specialist in sustainable mobility at Mobility Makers. Thus, the start-ups stopped using ” juicers »Self -entrepreneurs.

Paris went a notch further by holding in June 2020, after a call for tenders, three operators (Lime, Dott and Tier) who could deploy for two years each 5,000 devices provided that. The result ? Parisians have not seen many improvements. Visually, still as many users who circulate in the streets of Paris burning red lights. Trottinettes overturned on the sidewalks or parked outside the parking lots which are now reserved for them like bikes. Above all, always as much, or even more, of accidents: according to road safety, there were in France 35 deaths in 2022 against 10 in 2019 among EDP users (personal travel vehicles), mainly scooters.

It could have lasted a long time if the local political context had not evolved. On the occasion of the re -election of Anne Hidalgo, in 2020, the assistant in charge of transport changed. David Belliard replaced Christophe Najdovski. Always a green. But, on the subject, EELV changed his mind: the party that defended self-service skates began to find all the faults. “David Belliard has multiplied outings against scooters”, says Denis Saada, co -founder of Betterway, promoter of sustainable mobility. Thus, in September 2022, Belliard threatened operators not to relaunch a call for tenders at the end of the contract in the spring of 2023 if they do not reduce the nuisances generated by their service.

Together, the three start-ups have proposed solutions, including the registration of machines to facilitate the continuation of faulty users. “No one answered us. We felt that it smelled bad “, Do we explain to one of the three active operators in Paris. In fact, mid-January, Anne Hidalgo announced to everyone’s surprise a vote on scooters in early April. And specified that she would follow the majority from the vote. The rest, we know her. It remains to be seen now if the disappearance of scooters in ” Free Floating »Will be enough to restore more peaceful traffic in Paris.

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