Electric Kick Scooter Pilot Program - 2021 Season

The 2021 scooter season has been approved to operate from April 1, 2021 to November 30, 2021. The City is currently working with Ottawa Public Health (OPH) and other City departments to determine a launch date and roll out of the program in support of essential travel needs.

This year’s program will expand the number of e-scooters available to Ottawa residents and visitors from 600 in 2020 to 1,200 in an expanded central deployment area. Council approved an opportunity for providers to participate in a satellite project in an area outside the Greenbelt, in order to determine the use and feasibility of e-scooters in a suburban area. Talks are underway and staff will advise Council if a vendor elects to implement a satellite service this season.

The 2021 program will focus on reducing sidewalk riding and improper parking through a variety of mitigation measures and innovations deployed by the providers. This includes the competitive procurement process, which prioritized safety and accessibility in the selection of e-scooter providers. The City’s Accessibility Office also participated in the evaluation process. The successful vendors proposed to use both human and technology-based interventions, such as: rewards and penalties to encourage proper rider behavior and equipment that emits a warning sound and slows to a stop when sidewalk riding is detected. Additionally, City staff will monitor the roll out closely and meet with vendors to provide real-time feedback.

Below are additional details about the shared e-scooter pilot:

  • The scooters are for individual riders aged 16 years or older and are equipped with a bell, a brake and lights. Helmets are recommended for all riders and are mandatory for riders under the age of 18.

  • The scooters can be unlocked through the app available from the e-scooter providers and used from 6 am to 11 pm daily. They have a 20 km/h speed limit under the City’s E- Scooters By-law and are not allowed on sidewalks, National Capital Commission pathways, or in the City of Gatineau. E-scooters may be walked on to Line 1 LRT in 2021 through the first door of the first car of the vehicle.

  • Before a trip can be made, riders must agree in the app to follow all applicable rules, including: to not ride on sidewalks, and to park e-scooters upright in the sidewalk furniture zone, beside the curb, in line with trees and benches. The app also provides COVID-19 handwashing and physical distancing messaging consistent with Ottawa Public Health guidance.

  • Electric kick scooter-sharing systems use dockless technology, meaning there are no physical stations and the e-scooters can be picked up and dropped off anywhere in the area of operation. The scooters employ "geofencing" technology to slow the machines to a crawl and prevent them from being used in areas that are off limits.

To read full memo by the city click here

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