PBOT report finds bike infrastructure key to e-scooter utilization
The winding street of shared electrical scooters in Portland has taken one other flip. At the moment the transportation bureau launched a report (PDF) on scooter utilization and outlined plans for a everlasting system. Among the many findings is that cycling-specific infrastructure is vital to boosting scooter ridership, particularly in locations with high-stress streets like east Portland.
Portland launched e-scooters in summer 2018 as a pilot program. The Portland Bureau of Transportation deemed them a hit and launched a second pilot in spring 2019 that’s set to finish on December thirty first.
With classes realized in courtship and constructive indicators that the scooters are a wanted and precious a part of Portland’s transportation ecosystem, PBOT needs to calm down with fewer companions and a longer-term dedication. There are at present six totally different corporations providing scooters in Portland. That is clunky for each customers and PBOT employees to handle. A key suggestion within the report launched immediately says PBOT needs to work with 1-3 corporations for the subsequent 2-3 years.
Among the many takeaways within the report is the impression of motorcycle infrastructure on scooter utilization. Not solely did PBOT discover that the presence of motorcycle lanes led to a lot much less sidewalk-scootering, GPS information exhibits 32% of all scooter mileage befell on protected bike lanes, unprotected bike lanes, bridge bikeways, paths, and/or neighborhood greenways. “E-scooter riders really feel extra comfy when there may be protected infrastructure to experience separate from automobiles,” states the report.
PBOT was additionally in a position to examine how ridership information modified with the development of motorcycle infrastructure that was constructed between the primary and second pilots. In Waterfront Park for example, the construction of Better Naito in 2019 led to a 55% enhance in driving on Naito and a subsequent 45% lower on the park path (this additionally needed to do with signage warning folks to remain out of the park and a few “geofencing” from scooter distributors).
The new protected bike lanes on the Halsey-Weidler couplet in Gateway additionally seem to have impacted scooter utilization. PBOT evaluation exhibits a 125% enhance in journeys between 2019 and 2018. And on 102nd the place new bike lanes were installed, there was a 22% enhance in ridership. These will increase come whilst general e-scooter ridership was decrease in 2019 than 2018.
These findings present that biking advocates can be clever to embrace scooter riders in an effort to strengthen and diversify their push for extra devoted infrastructure. “Bicycling is usually related to white-dominant tradition,” PBOT writes within the report, “and e-scooters might or might not share that affiliation.”
Chosen graphics from the report
The advice of a everlasting program makes it clear the Metropolis of Portland sees scooters as an integral a part of the modal combine.
Whereas some scooter journeys substitute bike journeys, information reveals that scooters fill a unique want: The common journey size for e-scooter riders is simply over one mile and fewer than 14 minutes; the typical (non-electric) bike share journey is over two miles and 25 minutes.
With the local weather change disaster staring us instantly within the face nowadays, PBOT additionally sees scooters as a key solution to cut back automotive abuse. The town’s Transportation System Plan requires 475,000 fewer every day automotive and truck journeys by 2035. Nevertheless even when we succeed with adopted plans, we’ll nonetheless give you a “journey hole” of 63,000 every day journeys (see graph at proper). “If new mobility providers like e-scooters can present a lovely choice that reduces automotive use and automotive possession, they might assist shut this ‘journey hole’ and meet metropolis congestion and local weather objectives,” states the report.
And naturally e-scooter journeys are far more earth-friendly than automotive and truck journeys. PBOT estimates scooter riders have helped Portland decrease carbon emissions by 167 metric tons and have eliminated the equal of 27 passenger automobiles and vehicles from the streets over the 2019 pilot interval.
Together with the report, PBOT launched a scooter information dashboard and survey. Get all the data and hyperlinks here.
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and email@example.com
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